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Handcrafted Book Art from Cuba’s Ediciones Vigia


In 1985, a Cuban poet Alfredo Zaldivar and an artist Rolando Estevez established a literary forum for a group of Cuban artists in Matanzas, Cuba and called it Ediciones Vigía. For over twenty years now the goal for these artists has been to create beautiful handmade books. Through all of the social and political shifts, and even a severe paper shortage the artists have found ways to create works of enormous artistry, imagination, and creativity, by using found and recycled materials, such as leaves, sand, broken glass, and plastic.

Although a specific artist creates each edition, a team of artists in a publishing house in Matanzas works to create multiple copies of the book.  On every book, a drawing of a lantern or oil lamp is placed as a logo for the Ediciones Vigía publications. Perhaps, this is synonymous with their missions to light the way for artists and readers to be inspired by the world around them, as well as bringing into light many important Cuban artists and authors.

Dartmouth first began to acquire these books in 2003 as a result of faculty’s growing interest in them and since then has acquired more than 100 volumes, located in the Art Special Collection of the Sherman Art  Library.  A selection of books will be on display in the Sherman Art Library reference room July 29 through November 30, 2015, and the whole collection can be browsed in Artstor,|collections|36183||Ediciones20Vigia20Artists20Books|||

This exhibit was curated by Stacey Lee '17.

3 thoughts on “Handcrafted Book Art from Cuba’s Ediciones Vigia

  1. Lissa Weinmann

    I am curating a thematic series of films/cultural events on Cuba and am very interested in your book collection -- does it travel? We are an arts/education venue in Downtown Brattleboro and I am a a Senior Fellow at the World Policy Institute in New York focused on Cuba living in Brattleboro.

    1. Luis Miguel Perez Quintero

      I am a Cuban collector bookseller and I have a large collection of books made by Ediciones Vigía , if you are interested in purchasing or more information please contact , greetings .
      My email :
      Luis Miguel Perez Quintero (bookseller) 58062944

  2. David Unger

    We noticed that you have a small collection of Ediciones Vigia books. Would you be interested in purchasing our collection of 75 different titles of books and/or annual magazines? Thanks. David Unger


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