Now on View: Spare Beauty: The Cuban Kitchen

by Sarah Block, Library Communications

View Ellen Silverman's short film, "My Roots Lie Here," at https://vimeo.com/100001084

Click the image above to watch a video of the event on March 5. View Ellen Silverman’s short film, “My Roots Lie Here,” at vimeo.com/100001084.

A photography exhibition now on view at the Otto G. Richter Library explores life in present-day Cuba as it is intimately reflected in the vibrant tones and textures of homes throughout the island. The wide-format photographic prints featured in Spare Beauty: The Cuban Kitchen serve as vivid windows into decades-old interior spaces, deeply rooted in routine, tradition, and even memories— glimpses of which are brought out through each scene in vivid detail. These immersive scenes are the work of food and travel photographer Ellen Silverman, well-known for her work in celebrated cookbooks, travel magazines, and other artistic mediums. Spare Beauty is one in a series of Silverman’s projects inspired by her travels to Cuba.

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Ellen Silverman

“In my first of several trips to Cuba, I was welcomed into people’s kitchens, where I found sparse spaces where time has stopped,” the New York City-based photographer says in her artist statement. “Due to years of lack of money, supplies and equipment, people have been forced to adapt and improvise. While beautiful and visually stimulating to me, these kitchens are the very real circumstances of each person’s day to day life. This series of photographs reflects the personalities and the circumstances of those who inhabit them.”

Silverman visited the library in March for the opening of the exhibition and to present a short film she directed titled My Roots Lie Here, which can be viewed here. Click here to watch the presentation from the event.

This exhibition will run through July 31, 2015 as part of a library-wide exhibition series exploring culinary traditions and influences of South Florida and the Caribbean.

Photos by Andrew Innerarity.

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This exhibition will run through July 31, 2015 as part of a library-wide exhibition series.



3rd Annual Free Comic Book Day at Richter

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Come by the Richter Library Breezeway on Friday, May 1, from 12  – 2 p.m. and pick up a free comic! We will distribute single volumes (while supplies last) courtesy of Mac’s Comics, as well as coupons to the store. Librarians will be on site with information and samples from Richter Library’s growing Graphic Novels Collection.

Free Comic Book Day is a national event traditionally celebrated on the first Saturday in May. Mac’s Comics & Collectibles will host a Free Comic Book Day event at their store on Saturday, May 2.



Library Swag Giveaway!

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LIBRARY GIVEAWAY! Attn Students: As you’re spending time at the Richter, Music, or Architecture libraries for reading days and finals, try one of our bean bags—and when you do…

1. Post a photo of yourself using a bean bag on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram
2. Use the #mylibrarylovesme
3. Follow us on Facebook or @UMiamiLibraries on Instagram or Twitter and like our swag photo

For an additional entry, tag three friends in the comments of the swag photo.

Next Friday, 5/1, we will raffle off a bag of fun and useful library swag to those who have completed these steps. This contest is open to all University of Miami graduate and undergraduate students. Please enter by Thursday, 4/30, at 11 p.m. EST. A winner will be randomly selected and announced via UML’s accounts. If you are selected as a winner, please come to Richter Library (with your Cane Card) in order to claim your prize. Thanks in advance for your participation and good luck!



Now On View: An Entrée to Regional Fares and Flavors

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Three exhibitions explore the rich culinary traditions of South Florida, Cuba, and the Caribbean as documented in library collections and outside works, from family recipes and photographs of kitchens to cookbooks, restaurant postcards, and iconic menus.

Tropical Gastronomies: Documenting the Food Cultures of South Florida

Surveying the complex food history of South Florida starting with the earliest uses of tropical crops, this exhibition highlights restaurants of the tourism boom, the emergence of Caribbean flavors, and the local impact of modern fresh-food trends. This exhibit is located on Richter Library’s first floor.

Food and Memory: An Exploration of Cuban Cooking, 1857-today

Featuring books, ephemera, and photographs from the Cuban Heritage Collection that illustrate the idea of a distinct Cuban cuisine and how this cuisine shaped the way Cuban culture developed. This exhibit is located on Richter Library’s second floor.

Spare Beauty: The Cuban Kitchen

Highlighting the work of food and travel photographer Ellen Silverman from her travels to Cuba, where she was welcomed into people’s kitchens and found “sparse spaces where time has stopped.” This exhibit is located on Richter Library’s second floor.