‘Cuba The Natural Beauty’ comes to MIHS: Clyde Butcher exhibit runs Jan. 24 through April 29

Will Watts
Correspondent
The Marco Island Historical Society (MIHS) presents “Cuba: The Natural Beauty,” a photography exhibit by renowned photographer Clyde Butcher, at the Marco Island Historical Museum (MIHM) from Jan. 24 until April 29.

The stunning photography of Clyde Butcher captures and reveals the seductive beauty, subtle grandeur and majesty of Cuba and its people, and shares his haunting images with the world.

The Marco Island Historical Society (MIHS) presents “Cuba: The Natural Beauty,” a photography exhibit by renowned photographer Clyde Butcher, at the Marco Island Historical Museum (MIHM) from Jan. 24 until April 29.

An opening reception will be held from 4 until 8 p.m., Jan. 24.

Butcher’s powerful black and white photographs explore his intense and personal bond with the environment. For more than 50 years, he has preserved on film the untouched areas of the landscape. The exquisite beauty and depth of his photography draw the viewer into a relationship with nature.

As official photographer for the United Nations’ Conference for the Sustainable Habitat of the Mountain held in Cuba in 2002, Butcher went on three expeditions, accessing places not seen by visitors for over 50 years while photographing Cuba’s mountains and wondrous beauty.

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The first expedition reached across Eastern Cuba deep into the Sierra Maestra mountains where he captured on film the mountain mists, the Coral Coast, surrounding landscape and small towns. He, his wife Niki, and  Cuban guides hiked the Comandancia Trail with 120 pounds of camera equipment to reach Fidel Castro’s historic rebel camp, “Comandancia de la Plata.”

The expedition two took the group throughout Western Cuba to the Cordillera de Guaniguanico mountains where Butcher found the landscape to be “astounding” as well as to the capital of Havana with its colorful and eclectic architecture.

The third expedition included American ecologists with whom Butcher explored Central Cuba’s Escambray Mountains and Parque Natural Topes de Collante, known for its caves, rivers, waterfalls, canyons and natural pools with crystal-clear water. The expedition also explored Trinidad to document urban sites and spectacular landscapes. They then headed back to the Sierra Maestra mountains to gather for the United Nations’ Conference for the Sustainable Habitat of the Mountain.

Cuba: The Natural Beauty is part of ¡ARTE VIVA! — a collaborative initiative that brings together the arts and culture organizations and hospitality partners of Florida’s Paradise Coast to celebrate the artistic contributions of the Hispanic community.

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The year-long celebration features over 50 local events, exhibits, performances, and educational opportunities. Celebrations include the Mexican Día de los Muertos (Day of the Dead), photography exhibits, dance featuring Zarzuela music and flamenco, Latin jazz concerts and more. Presented by the Naples, Marco Island, Everglades CVB and supported by the Collier County Board of County Commissioners. For event schedule, visit ¡ARTE-VIVA!

The Marco Island Historical Museum is located at 180 S. Heathwood Drive. Open 9 a.m. until 4 p.m., Tuesday through Saturday. Admission is free.

For information, call 239.389.6447 or visit theMIHS.org.