New acquisition: Raquel Lázaro and Jesús M. Casagrán papers

Last week we had a visit from Raquel Lázaro, the Cuban painter and widow of sculptor Jesús Casagrán. She was generous enough to give us a collection of photographs, exhibit catalogs, and a scrapbook related to her and her husband’s careers as visual artists. Here are a few images from the Raquel Lázaro and Jesús M. Casagrán Papers.

Click images to enlarge.

Raquel Lázaro and Jesús Casagrán, early 1950s?

Raquel Lázaro with one of her paintings, 1980s

A 30″ x 40″ acrylic painting by Raquel Lázaro, 1980s

Rumba by Jesús Casagrán, 1930s

India by Jesús Casagrán, 1931

New digital collections: drawings of Santería deities, and anti-communist posters by Agrupación Abdala

With the generous support from The Goizueta Foundation, materials from two of our collections have been newly digitized and are now available for your viewing!

The Orichas Collection consists of a series of drawings by Cuban-born artist Alberto del Pozo (1946-1992) of the deities of Afro-Cuban Santería, called orichas. There are approximately 25 orichas in the Santería pantheon, 17 of which were depicted by del Pozo in this series. You can view 17 signed lithographs from the collection as well as one catalog of the series are available online here. To find out more about Alberto del Pozo, the collection, as well as the orichas themselves, visit this virtual exhibit.

Agrupación Abdala (or Agrupación Estudiantil Abdala) was an anti-communist organization of primarily Cuban-born students founded in the United States in 1968 with chapters at several colleges and universities around the country. Abdala hosted congresses, marches, and other events to promote their anti-Castro agenda. Dating from 1967 to 1982, the posters in this collection advertise these events and Abdala’s causes. All of the posters from this collection have been digitized and are available online here.

The Randy Barceló Collection

The Randy Barceló Collection Finding Aid

Although best known for his set and costume designs, Randy Barceló was also a dancer, photographer, interior designer, and all around artist. Born in Havana on September 19, 1946, Barceló left Cuba through Operation Pedro Pan at the age of 14. He studied art at University of Puerto Rico and in 1965 moved to New York where he enrolled in the Lester Pollard Theatre Forum School of Design.

Barceló began his career as a dancer and choreographer. At the age of 24 he worked as a designer for the Broadway musical, Lenny. In 1972 he designed the costumes for Jesus Christ Superstar and was nominated for a Tony Award, the first Hispanic nominee for costume design. He went on to design costumes for several on and off Broadway plays and musicals, ballet and dance productions, and operas.

In 1994, Barceló designed costumes for ¡Si Señor! ¡Es Mi Son!, choreographed for Ballet Hispanico by Alberto Alonso and Sonia Calero with music by Gloria Estefan. These were his final designs as he died of cancer on December 6th of that same year.

In 1995, the Barceló family generously donated to the Cuban Heritage Collection Randy’s original costume and set designs,costume plots, drawings and sketches, and classated materials. A year later, the family founded the Fundación Randy Barceló to perpetuate Randy’s artistic legacy.

MDCDCA logoThe Cuban Heritage Collection preserved, arranged, and described the Randy Barceló Collection with funds provided by the Miami-Dade County Department of Cultural Affairs and the Cultural Affairs Council, the Miami-Dade County Mayor and Board of County Commissioners.