Africa House Museums, Havana . Cuba
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- Obrapia No. 157 e/ San Ignacio y Mercaderes, Havana City. Cuba
- Destination: Havana
- Open: Daily
- Telephone: (537) 8615798
Your experience is very valuable for other travelers.
It is located in an old colonial palace in Old Havana, and it was inaugurated in 1986. It holds valuable collections from 38 countries of this continent. It is enriched with the important Afro- Cuban collection of the researcher Don Fernando Ortiz and the African Collection of the President Fidel Castro.
It exhibits valuable original pieces related with the period of slavery in Cuba, as sackles and stocks.
The rooms of the museum permit to appreciate not only works of contemporary art of Central and South Africa, but also personal objects, original handcrafts, rituals and music from those places. Considering the ethnographic character of the museum it has a library specialized on African religions.
There are also transitory exhibitions of Cuban artists whose works are related with the field of the institution.
In this institution makes ethnic and cultural research of the nations represented in it, and mainly of those with a great influence in the Cuban culture.
The Museum Casa de Africa is a center of studies and meeting place of researchers, ethnologist, linguists and experts on African and Afro-Cuban studies, to expose and published the results of their works.
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Africa House is located in Havana
Capital of Cuba and the country's administrative, political, cultural and scientific center, it is also the capital of two provinces: City of Havana and Havana. Though only around 280 square miles (727 square kilometers) in size-0.65 percent of the archipelago's total area.
The Old Havana and system of forts led UNESCO to declare it a part of world heritage in 1982. Founded on its present site in 1519, the settlement of San Cristobal de La Habana prospered mainly due to its bay, which was a natural port of call for ships sailing to and from the New World. Starting in 1634, because of its strategic location, San Cristobal de La Habana was considered the key to the New World-as attested to by royal letters patent-and the main defense of the West Indies.
The Cuban capital consists of an immense number of buildings in a wide range of architectural styles, built in the course of nearly five centuries. These styles range from the pre-baroque to the baroque, neo-Gothic, neoclassical, eclectic, art noveau and art-deco, to the modern.
Alejo Carpentier, one of Cuba's most famous authors, called it "the city of columns" and focused attention on its streets, which he considered a perennially rich show of life, humanity and contrasts that was bound to entertain any observer.
Over 14 kilometers of excellent beaches lie to the east of the Cuban capital. To the south, a green belt contributes to a healthful atmosphere.
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This museum is located in the old historical quarter of the city. There are two exhibition rooms constantly opened to the public. One contains a collection of objects contributed by museums in the Republic of South Africa; the other has a small display of Afro-Cuban religious objects. Cuban society is a cultural melange or fusion with an African influence that is visible in all of its arts forms such as music, painting, dance and literature.
En la gran edificación que fuera a fines del siglo XIX almacén de tabaco y centro comercial, se ubica la Casa de África. Esa institución patrimonial acomete la promoción científica y cultural de las raíces africanas en la nación cubana, a través de jornadas científicas, eventos de carácter nacional e internacional, y múltiples actividades que persiguen fomentar el rescate de tradiciones y el legado sociocultural proveniente del continente africano. Más de 2 000 piezas componen la exposición permanente de esa casa museo. La muestra comprende la historia de la emigración africana como mano de obra esclava hacia el nuevo mundo. La planta baja, exhibe piezas que ilustran el período esclavista azucarero cubano. Calderas de antiguos trapiches, reproducciones de primitivas máquinas para moler caña de azúcar e instrumentos de castigo para esclavos pueden ser apreciados por los visitantes. La tercera planta está ocupada por salas dedicadas a Fernando Ortiz, eminente etnólogo y sociólogo cubano, del que se exponen libros y objetos personales, también muestras de las prácticas religiosas afrocubanas: Regla de Ocha o Santería, Palo Monte y Abakúa o Ñañiguismo. Una biblioteca especializada atesora volúmenes de importantes autores indispensables para estudios etnológicos y de antropología cultural.
“Casa de Africa. ”
Casa de Africa is worth a quick visit if you have the time. It is only half a block off the main tourist thoroughfare Calle Mercaderes. Occasionally you might find events or performances here but mostly it is fairly laid back as you can see from the guards in my photos.
“Relaxed and Educational ”
This museum gives an excellent overview of the African roots of Cuban culture. It's small, but packed with aesthetic and interesting exhibits. An hour spent here is an hour well spent. Staff are also very helpful and speak English.
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