10 x 14 IN.  /  COLLAGES

Typography. Illustration. Art Direction. Video Editing. Sound Design.

Thanks to Evan Gendell for his assistance with filming and sound design (coming soon!).

Puedes Hablar is an ongoing project through which I am exploring Cuban-Americanism and how my relationship with this identity has evolved over time. Over the years I have collected audiovisual artifacts related to my family’s emigration from Cuba to the United States and subsequent assimilation in the Midwest. These elements—naturalization records, passenger lists, transcribed voicemails, personal childhood motifs—provide me with tangible connections to my history. However, as time and generations pass, these links become more tenuous.

I approached this series of sketches both analytically and intuitively while contemplating the phrase “puedes hablar,” which means both “you can speak” and, if intonated as a question, “can you speak?” This mantra-of-sorts reflects questions regarding my right to claim a Cuban identity as a white, US-born millennial removed from the realities experienced by my maternal family, yet it also affirms my innate connection to these histories and how they manifest in my thoughts, actions and sense of self.