(…)When discovering Jorge Otero’s (Havana, 1982) work, I also discovered that History may be light; that it does not, necessarily, have to break our shoulders with the distressing composure of its years.
(…)The peasant imaginary was a recurrent motive in the artisticliterary production of the past century. From the early decades of the twenties and thirties, pictorial avant-garde used it whether as an identity mark, whether as a social denunciation of the political regime. The peasants by Carlos Enríquez, Eduardo Abela and Arístides Fernández are perhaps the most eloquent examples. (…)
So, in the early seventies, a good part of epic photography approached the topic: Servando Cabrera poured his peasant militias in the canvases; then, in the seventies, young Nelson Domínguez and Eduardo Roca (Choco) flooded the galleries with a host of experiences from the sugar cane harvest and the rural environment. All these visitations maintained, with less or more distance, some consistency on form and contents. (…)
In later years, however, as the Berlin Wall fell and the nineties eroded old utopias, the topic began to lose supporters. During the second decade of the 21st century, Otero retook these poetics with a voice of his own, present and polished. For that purpose, most of his time had as a vehicle the codes of corporeal photography. (…)
The male torso, almost always hanging on an untainted white isolating it from all alien pollution, hybridizes with the yarey, to its position and linguistic levels, to create a new sign. (…) His is a story of tedium and habit, but also of stoicism, serenity, patience. (…)