Cuba-Bulgaria, in Layers

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This is the Cuban family (sister, nephews and 93-year-old mother) of a man who fled from Cuba to Florida during the Mariel Boatlift of 1980. The four have been separated from their uncle, son and brother for 35 years. It is blended with a faraway view of the Brandenburg Gate, as close as you could get from East Berlin before the fall of the Berlin Wall - photographed during one of few vacations my grandparents and father could take in the Communist years. International travel was limited to pre-approved countries within the Eastern Bloc (while Western nations were accessible with government approval only.) The merging of these images speaks of both the desire for and difficulty of emigration in repressed sociopolitical climates.  <br />
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I've layered family photos taken in Bulgaria before the fall of the Berlin Wall with pictures I recently shot in Cuba, to reveal the visual and sociopolitical connections between the two. Both portions of this project - in Bulgaria and Cuba - were supported by The Pulitzer Center on Crisis Reporting.