The Havana Archive | Basil Hyman | April 2013

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“My interest lies in trying to show how life used to be in this visual history of Havana’s heyday.” – Basil Hyman

 

Exotic, glamorous, dangerous and the ultimate destination by the 1920s. The notorious city of Havana, and indeed the Caribbean island of Cuba as a whole, enjoyed a hedonistic heyday in the mid-twentieth century with a plethora of visitors from overseas including Mafia bosses and Hollywood stars.

 

 

Archivist and photographer Basil Hyman releases The Havana Archive, a new book on Cuba in the 1920s, an island which represented exotic foreignness while at the same time being just a short distance away from the American mainland and a subject which continues to intrigues readers in the 21st century.

 

 

In 2006 on a trip to Paris to study and search for vintage photographs Hyman acquired an entire visual archive which had once belonged to John Dullard, brother of Grover Dullard a chauffeur and bodyguard for Chicago mobster Terry ‘Machine-Gun’ Druggan, the ambitious leader of the Valley Gang during prohibition. The archive included a collection of press photographs of Havana from the 1920s through to the 1950s, as well as a range of ephemera including menus, playbills, tickets, bringing the city vibrantly back to life.

 

 

For Hyman, whose previous books Photographs Found and The Lost Album documented his own experiences in the 1950s and 1960s; his discovery started a love affair with Cuba and the culture of the American Mob. His continued research and archive skills over a six year period have led him to The Havana Archive, a book featuring photographs and ephemera from a lost world.

 

 

The book guides us through the personal photographs of a man living in a taut political situation and illustrates the dazzlingly-escapist and pleasure-seeking lifestyle of the gangster squad who devoted their evenings at the Cabaret, attending grand casinos and strolling along the boardwalk of the communist city.

 

Hyman has developed an acute passion for photography and collecting, with his archive and photographic skills taking him around the world to research and ultimately educate us all in our often abandoned contemporary history. Through Hyman we see and touch the past through someone else’s eyes giving us an insight into incredibly personal social histories.

Press Release: The Havana Archive | Basil Hyman | April 2013

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Charlotte Sluter
Jan 24

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PRESS RELEASE

THE HAVANA ARCHIVE

BY BASIL HYMAN

Available from April 2013

“My interest lies in trying to show how life used to be in this visual history of Havana’s heyday.” – Basil Hyman

 

Exotic, glamorous, dangerous and the ultimate destination by the 1920s. The notorious city of Havana, and indeed the Caribbean island of Cuba as a whole, enjoyed a hedonistic heyday in the mid-twentieth century with a plethora of visitors from overseas including Mafia bosses and Hollywood stars.

Archivist and photographer Basil Hyman releases The Havana Archive, a new book on Cuba in the 1920s, an island which represented exotic foreignness while at the same time being just a short distance away from the American mainland and a subject which continues to intrigues readers in the 21st century.

In 2006 on a trip to Paris to study and search for vintage photographs Hyman acquired an entire visual archive which had once belonged to John Dullard, brother of Grover Dullard a chauffeur and bodyguard for Chicago mobster Terry ‘Machine-Gun’ Druggan, the ambitious leader of the Valley Gang during prohibition. The archive included a collection of press photographs of Havana from the 1920s through to the 1950s, as well as a range of ephemera including menus, playbills, tickets, bringing the city vibrantly back to life.

For Hyman, whose previous books Photographs Found and The Lost Album documented his own experiences in the 1950s and 1960s; his discovery started a love affair with Cuba and the culture of the American Mob. His continued research and archive skills over a six year period have led him to The Havana Archive, a book featuring photographs and ephemera from a lost world.

The book guides us through the personal photographs of a man living in a taut political situation and illustrates the dazzlingly-escapist and pleasure-seeking lifestyle of the gangster squad who devoted their evenings at the Cabaret, attending grand casinos and strolling along the boardwalk of the communist city.

Hyman has developed an acute passion for photography and collecting, with his archive and photographic skills taking him around the world to research and ultimately educate us all in our often abandoned contemporary history. Through Hyman we see and touch the past through someone else’s eyes giving us an insight into incredibly personal social histories.

ENDS

 

The Havana Archive will be available to buy from April 2013, from www.booth-clibborn.com

 

For more information, images and interview requests please contact Charlotte or Julia at Purple:

charlotte@purplepr.com | 020 7434 7069 | julia@purplepr.com | 020 7434 7082

 

Notes to editors

Basil Hyman

Basil Hyman (b. 1936) has been passionate about photography and design since the age of nine, and began to collect vintage photographs about 20 years ago. In 2002 Basil was disappointed to note very little activity in vintage photography with insufficient all-round knowledge in the UK. He went to the USA and this motivated him to connect with Gerry Badger and Chris Boot, and ‘Collecting Photography’ was born (published by Mitchell Beazley). He wanted to pass the pleasure of collecting to a wider audience and is now planning further titles in the same genre. He studied Design at the Shoreditch Technical College and has created numerous furniture designs and retail concepts.

 

Booth-Clibborn Editions

Booth-Clibborn Editions was founded in 1974 as a wholly independent company publishing an outstanding list of books. Titles range from monographs on contemporary artists, books for museums and art galleries worldwide and an eclectic mix of contemporary media, photography and graphics. www.booth-clibborn.com

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