Ongoing: Democracy + Communism: Synopsis: Communism, across time + geography: Dem-Com_018

Left - (L-R) Participants in the 1st of May Labor Day parade march of 2015 in Havana, Cuba, hold signs of German Communist revolutionary Friedrich Engels, Russian Communist leader Vladimir Lenin and German Communist revolutionary Karl Marx. In Cuba, the day known as Dia del Trabajo is a call for people to show support to their socialist government and the Cuban Revolution. Guests worldwide are known to join. While attendance is not mandatory, absences are usually noted and discouraged. The Communist years' Labor Day marches in Bulgaria were much like those in today's Cuba: people huddling with their co-workers in the early a.m. hours, waiting for their attendance to be accounted by their boss - or face social and professional retribution.  Right - Communist nostalgia is still very much alive in Bulgaria. Tato, a bar in Sofia (currently closed due to the death of its owner,) is decorated with portraits of Bulgarian Communist dictator Todor Zhivkov (upper center,) in Bulgaria's capital Sofia, on November 6th, 2014. His nickname and bar's namesake {quote}Tato{quote} is a play on the word {quote}dad{quote} in Bulgarian. Zhivkov was the head of state of the People's Republic of Bulgaria from March 4, 1954 until the day after the fall of the Berlin Wall, November 10, 1989, when he resigned under political pressure over the country's worsening economy and public unrest. I've used diptychs to bridge one country’s past - communist Cuba - to another country’s present - post-1989 Bulgaria - to show that political ideals, its profiteers and its victims, can remain unchanged by time or geography.

Left - (L-R) Participants in the 1st of May Labor Day parade march of 2015 in Havana, Cuba, hold signs of German Communist revolutionary Friedrich Engels, Russian Communist leader Vladimir Lenin and German Communist revolutionary Karl Marx. In Cuba, the day known as Dia del Trabajo is a call for people to show support to their socialist government and the Cuban Revolution. Guests worldwide are known to join. While attendance is not mandatory, absences are usually noted and discouraged.  

The Communist years' Labor Day marches in Bulgaria were much like those in today's Cuba: people huddling with their co-workers in the early a.m. hours, waiting for their attendance to be accounted by their boss - or face social and professional retribution.  

Right - Communist nostalgia is still very much alive in Bulgaria. Tato, a bar in Sofia (currently closed due to the death of its owner,) is decorated with portraits of Bulgarian Communist dictator Todor Zhivkov (upper center,) in Bulgaria's capital Sofia, on November 6th, 2014. His nickname and bar's namesake "Tato" is a play on the word "dad" in Bulgarian. Zhivkov was the head of state of the People's Republic of Bulgaria from March 4, 1954 until the day after the fall of the Berlin Wall, November 10, 1989, when he resigned under political pressure over the country's worsening economy and public unrest.  

I've used diptychs to bridge one country’s past - communist Cuba - to another country’s present - post-1989 Bulgaria - to show that political ideals, its profiteers and its victims, can remain unchanged by time or geography.