Four decades after the U.S. imposed a trade embargo on Cuba, Hudsons, Edsels and Chevys still chug through the streets of Havana. Now, Interlink Publishing of Northampton, Massachusetts has published ‘Cuba Classics: A Celebration of Vintage American Automobiles’ that honors these beauties of a bygone era in their unlikely communist setting.
In this lavishly illustrated coffee-table book, travel writer/photographer Christopher P. Baker pays homage to Cuba’s astonishing wealth of antique cars, revealing the time-worn splendor of classic American automobiles spanning eight decades. From Model-T Fords and ‘40s-era Buick Roadmasters to late ‘50s Edsel Citations and Chevrolet Impalas with fins sharp enough to draw blood, ‘Cuba Classics’ evokes the nostalgic and seductive world of Cuba’s car culture.
Written in the lively, engaging style that has won the author numerous literary awards, Baker draws upon memoirs, museum records, personal interviews, and Cuba’s own dusty archives to celebrate the four-wheeled survivors from the heyday of Detroit.
Tracing the evolution of motor madness in decadent pre-revolutionary Cuba, ‘Cuba Classics’ also surveys the tough realities of caring for vintage cars in the modern age of embargo and shortages. In a dynamic photojournalistic essay that portrays the long love affair between Cubans and the U.S. automobile, the author offers a paean to the extraordinary people who keep their weary cacharros running with resourcefulness, ingenuity, and indefatigable good humor.
‘Cuba Classics’ captivates everyone from armchair travelers to classic car connoisseurs with powerful imagery. Blurry action shots of moving cars; close-up details of hood ornamentation, grillwork, and dashboards; and lavish landscapes that place the vehicles within a setting both sensual and surreal are complemented by extensive captions that, together, illustrate the subject magnificently.
Acclaimed travel photographer Robert Holmes wrote the Foreword. “Baker has done a remarkable job documenting Cuba’s most important cultural icons, visually capturing the elusive sense of place that is the goal of every travel photographer and yet which very few ever achieve. A better book on Cuba would be hard to find,” writes Holmes, twice recipient of the coveted “Travel Photographer of the Year” award.
About ‘Cuba Classics: A Celebration of Vintage American Automobiles’ and the author:
The 190-page ‘Cuba Classics: A Celebration of Vintage American Automobiles’ (ISBN 1-56656-546-4) is published by Interlink Publishing of Northampton, Massachusetts, and released in August 2004. The large-format, hard cover edition is illustrated with 168 photographs. Christopher P. Baker is also the author of ‘National Geographic Traveler Cuba,’ ‘Moon Handbooks: Cuba,’ ‘Moon Handbooks: Havana,’ and ‘Mi Moto Fidel: Motorcycling Through Castro’s Cuba,’ winner of both the 2002 Lowell Thomas Award ‘Travel Book of the Year’ and the North American Travel Journalists Association’s ‘Grand Prize.’ More information is available on http://www.cuba-automobiles.com
For more information contact:
Moira Megargee, Interlink Publishing: 413/582-7054,