27 October 2013

Castro's 'Favorite Hobby'

Most auctions of photographs featured in this ongoing series of Top eBay Chess Items by Price are of interest because of an associated autograph rather than the photo itself. The item below, titled '"Joy of a Hobby" Cuban Leader Fidel Castro Playing Chess by Alberto Korda' is an exception. It appears to have sold for about $800, 'Best offer accepted'.

The left half of the composite image shows the original item that was listed on eBay. The right side shows enlargements of the central photos from the first three rows. A smiling, thoughtful Castro is thoroughly enjoying the game.

The description added more detail about the item,

Contact Sheet Print. Full story of "Joy of a Hobby" Photo Collection 1960-1968. Revolutionary Cuban Leader Fidel Castro playing chess. Signed by the author, my father, Alberto Korda. Museum Quality. Print in Black & White. Paper Gelatin Paper Process.

and about the photographer,

Author: Alberto Korda, my father, best known for his photo "Guerrillero HerĂ³ico" Ernesto ("Che") Guevara the photo that made a man's life a legend. The Maryland Institute of Art called "Guerrillero HerĂ³ico" the most famous photograph in the world, and a symbol of the 20th century. It also appears in the book The Photos of the Century: 100 Historic Moments by Marie-Monique Robin. It's known as the new Christ. It's declared a masterpiece, and is part of the Louvre Museum's photo collection.

However, this is not the only photo that made my father's work epic. This Contact Sheet Print shows a full story of a day in the life of the Cuban leader enjoying his favorite hobby. My father was one of the few Cuban photojournalists responsible for capturing the world's attention with the Cuban Revolution Propaganda. He followed the Cuban leaders around and became Fidel Castro's personal photographer for more than a decade (request from Fidel Castro, who was one of his admirers).

My father's passion and exceptional skills as a photographer made every event of The Cuban Revolution a magnificent moment, a genuine representation of an era of changes and beauty. He once said, "My photographs are vivid memories of my country's history. They gave me the opportunity to succeed as a photographer."

This blog's archives don't divulge any other posts about Castro, although one comes close: The Game of Warriors.

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