Miami Dade College’s Museum of Art + Design Presents the inaugural Exhibition at the new Cultural Legacy Gallery, Cuba Out of Cuba: Through the Lens of Alexis Rodriguez-Duarte in Collaboration with Tico Torres MOAD - Cuban Diaspora Celia L Credit: Alexis Rodriguez-Duarte in collaboration with Tico Torres Miami, July 28, 2014 - The Museum of Art + Design (MOAD) at Miami Dade College (MDC) presents Cuba Out of Cuba: Through the Lens of Alexis Rodriguez-Duarte in Collaboration with Tico Torres. The inaugural exhibition will open to the public at 6 p.m. Friday, September 19, at the new Cultural Legacy Gallery, a permanent space dedicated to the impact of Cuban culture on South Florida and throughout the world, housed at the National Historic Landmark Freedom Tower at Miami Dade College in Downtown Miami. Cuba Out of Cuba: Through the lens of Alexis Rodriguez-Duarte in collaboration with Tico Torres features what have become iconic photographs of Cuban figures living outside the island, among them performers, composers, designers, writers and artists. The Cuba Out of Cuba series was shot over the last twenty years in Miami, New York, London, Paris, Florence, Venice and Los Angeles. The exhibition will take a unique and historical approach in surveying the legacies of individuals such as Celia Cruz, Bebo Valdez, Gloria Estefan, Cristina Saralegui, Andy Garcia, Cundo Bermudez, Nilo Cruz, and Paquito d’Rivera, among other Cubans who have influenced the greater culture of their time. Alexis Rodríguez-Duarte was born in Havana, Cuba. In 1968 he and his parents were among Cuban exiles who left the Island aboard the humanitarian air lifts called the Freedom Flights. Once arriving to Miami, his family and many thousands of other Cuban exiles came through the doors of the Freedom Tower that served as a processing and assistance center for the exile community. For many, the tower provided nothing less than their freedom from Castro and the hardships Cuba had come to give them, rightly earning its name of the Freedom Tower. Rodriguez–Duarte’s family settled in Miami’s Little Havana community. At the age of 10, he was given his first camera by his grandfather, which led to his love affair with photography. Today, he is a New York and Miami-based internationally renowned photographer whose work has appeared in The New Yorker, Vanity Fair, Town & Country, and Harper’s Bazaar, among other major publications, and has exhibited his work at the Smithsonian Institution in Washington D.C., Museum of the City of New York, The Victoria and Albert Museum in London and The Bass Museum of Art in Miami Beach among others. Rodriguez-Duarte and his husband of 31 years, Tico Torres, have been documenting the Cuban diaspora since 1993. Torres, a photo stylist who is a master of the mise-en-scene, helped create with Rodriguez-Duarte the joyous image of Celia Cruz standing amid the towering palms of Fairchild Tropical Garden in a traditional ruffled Cuban gown. He was also there to set the mood in the London flat of Guillermo Cabrera Infante, one of Cuba’s most famous authors. Torres and his family were also among Cuban exiles who settled in Miami’s Hialeah community. Rodriguez-Duarte and Torres are thrilled to be returning together, full circle to the historic Freedom Tower for this inaugural exhibit, after separately setting foot there as immigrant children so many years before. The inaugural exhibition kicks off the Museum’s fall season scheduled for Friday, September 19, 2014 from 6 p.m. until 9 p.m. in conjunction with SIDE BY SIDE: MDCULTURE STANDS AS ONE, a one night event held at the College’s historic Freedom Tower, featuring performances, exhibitions, film screenings, the public unveiling of 2014 Book Fair Poster, and the long awaited Cuban Exile Experience at the Freedom Tower. Cuba Out of Cuba: Through the Lens of Alexis Rodriguez-Duarte in Collaboration with Tico Torres will remain on display at the museum through August 30, 2015. All exhibitions are free and open to the public. MDC’s Freedom Tower was operated by the U.S. Government as a reception center for Cuban refugees from 1962 to 1974. “The building is significant because it represents the important story of the Cuban exodus to America and resettlement during the Cold War,” reports the U.S. Department of the Interior, which has also called the Freedom Tower the “Ellis Island of the South.” Though it operated in that capacity for only 12 years, the building has become an icon representing the faith that democracy brought to troubled lives, the generosity of the American people and a hopeful beginning that assured thousands a new life in a new land. WHAT: Cuba Out of Cuba: Through the Lens of Alexis Rodriguez-Duarte in Collaboration with Tico Torres WHEN: Friday, September 19 –Opening Reception from 6 – 9 p.m. September 19, 2014 – August 30, 2015 Museum Hours: Wednesday – Sunday, noon to 5 p.m. WHERE: MDC Museum of Art + Design Cultural Legacy Gallery The Freedom Tower at MDC, First Floor 600 Biscayne Blvd. About MDC Museum of Art + Design MDC Museum of Art + Design (MOAD) is Miami Dade College’s flagship institution dedicated to the presentation and exhibition of visual art and design, housed at the National Historic Landmark Freedom Tower at Miami Dade College in Downtown Miami. The mission of the Museum is to promote the appreciation and understanding of art and its role in society through direct engagement with original works of art from within the College’s extensive permanent collection and temporary exhibitions. Furthermore, the Museum presents year-round lectures, symposiums and art related events to expose, educate and engage the greater public through related creative processes. The MDC Museum of Art + Design provides its patrons and visitors access to unique cultural, historical and educational exhibitions that enrich the greater community while building and preserving an expansive permanent art collection. Miami Dade College has been collecting art since the 1960s. Over the years, the collection has grown contain more than 1,600 works in all mediums and genres, specifically within the movements of minimalism, pop art of the ’60s and ’70s, conceptual art and contemporary Latin American art. The College and Museum actively acquire works by emerging and under-recognized artists, as well as major figures in modern, post-modern and contemporary art. About The Cuban Exile Experience & Cultural Legacy Gallery The Cuban Exile Experience & Cultural Legacy Gallery is a historical division of the MDC Museum of Art + Design. In addition to visual arts, the Museum supports exhibitions and programs that collect, preserve, research and interpret stories and artifacts that help build a better community understanding and appreciation of the Freedom Tower’s history. For more information about the exhibition, events or VIP Opening Reception at MDC Museum of Art + Design, please contact the Museum at 305-237-7722 or Event contacts: Juan Mendieta, 305-237-7611,, MDC communications director Tere Estorino Florin, 305-237-3949,, MDC media relations director Roxana Romero, 305-237-3366,, media specialist Sue Arrowsmith, 305-237-3710,, media specialist Alejandro Rios, 305-237-7482,

Manuel Gutiérrez Fernández de Castro

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Manuel's Story

I arrived on August 29, 1961 and I was going to go to my uncle's house in Hialeah but so were two brothers and one sister and my uncle asked me if I would be so kind as to go with George Guarch who would take me somewhere and someone else would take care of me, that he already had three children and seven would be just about too many to handle.

So that day about 6 or 7 of us recently-arrived children between the ages of 12 and 17 went to Kendall - where the girls were! - and we stood around chatting with female company (without adult supervision!) and they even showed us where the dorms were (from the outside, of course). We thought among ourselves that we were in some sort of American Heaven and could no do any better.

That night they took 5 of us to Camp Matecumbe and we arrived in a jungle with cabins and slept on the concrete floor in Sergio's cabin because there were no beds available and no cots yet.

Reality had set in.

Seven months later a dozen of us were sent to Lincoln, Nebraska and our American lives began.

Forty-eight years later, as I am almost ready to retire and I look upon my wife - also a Pedro Pan child - my two boys and their wives and what my life has been I still thank my parents for their foresight and the sacrifice.

Would I do the same? Indubitably!

Almost at the start of my website/newsletter for Pedro Pan children in 1999 ( sent a questionnaire regarding the subject of our parents' actions and their sacrifice and how other PPs felt about the silly rumor that we had been "abducted" by the CIA.

The responses were heartwarming: Most of the respondents were thankful for their parents' sacrifice and thought the rumor was unfounded.

Now in 2009 I read the comments of hundreds of PPs in the Miami Herald Pedro Pan Network database - an outgrowth of George Guarch's careful documentation of our arrivals back in the early 60s - verifying that the inmense majority of us DO thank our parents, father Walsh and God for our good fortunes.

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Que tal Manny al fin me pude conectar con el webside de los Peter Pam.Este es Jesús Alonso.Yo leo tu gran newsletter todos los meses y cada ves se pone major. No pares de escribir ,que por ti yo me pude comunicar con mi major amigo de Cuba ,Que esta ahora en Miami.KEEP UP THE GOOD WORK. Jesusito

Message by Jesus Eliseo Alonso Collado | Jul 3rd 2014

Mi pesame en la muerte de tu mama. Que Dios la tenga en la gloria, fue una mujer muy valiente.

Message by Marcos F. Pinedo | Jan 16th 2012

Manny: I just heard about the passingof your mom! I wanted to mention her here to make sure that we acccount and honor all our parents who made such a brave choice to save us, their children. May she rest in peace in the glory of Our Lord, Jesus Christ!

Message by Susy Rodriguez | Jan 16th 2012

LOL! Those were the good ole days!!!

Message by Susy Rodriguez | Sep 18th 2011

Manny, a mi tambien me agrado mucho poder volver a vernos despues de tantos años. Cuantas cosas tenemos en comun, aparte de una gran memoria y gratos recuerdos. La idea de la poesia me vino a la mente cuando recorde mis primeras noches en la cabaña de Sergio, estoy seguro que tu integrabas el "CORO " nuestro tambien. Dios siempre nos acompañaba y cuidaba nuestra hermandad. Un fuerte abrazo....MELVIN

Message by Melvin F Noriega Plasencia | Mar 22nd 2011

Sí, eso me dice todo el mundo. Ahora yo tampoco me acuerdo del nombre del artista.

Message by Eloísa Echazábal | Jan 6th 2011

Very nice photos, Manny!

Message by Eloísa Echazábal | Jan 6th 2011

Manuel has uploaded new photos.

Status update | Jan 5th 2011

Manny, Correcto Jose Luis Maneiro fue a los Maristas y tenia dos hermanos(Ovidio y Manuel).Tambien debes de conocer a Miguel Jaureguizar, quien tenia un hermano(Luis)Ellos junto con otros nos fuimos para Wash., D.C. Nov-6-61 La ultima vez que vi a Jose Luis fue en mi boda (8-20-66), vivian en Salem Mass y desde entonces nada. A Miguel si lo vi en Washington hace tres anos, el esta en las afuera de D.C. Si miras mis fotos hay una, el dia que llegaron los padre de Jose Luis y otra del grupo de los mayores. Cuidate JAM

Message by Justo Alejandro Martinez Monzon | Jan 4th 2011

Hello Manny Saludos, like i told you some time ago, last year at a PP. picnic "El Chicharo" Armanduco y yo estubimos hablando de lo mismo , it seems like someone is killing us alive , well i know it's not intencionatly , did you ever talk to Larry Ramos ?? ese es otro PP. muerto en vida .well bye now kid, un abrazo "El Frances"

Message by Eddie Enrique Fernandez Tramezaygues | Nov 20th 2010

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