Ongoing: Democracy + Communism: Synopsis: Communism, across time + geography: Dem-Com_021

Left - Protesters against bank KTB (Corporate Commercial Bank) gather in front of the Bulgarian National Assembly in Bulgaria's capital Sofia, on November 06, 2014. KTB closed in June, its customers no longer able to access their money, and the majority owner Tsvetan Vasilev was indicted for corporate embezzlement in absentia and placed on Interpol's and Schengen's most wanted lists. Bulgaria's central bank subsequently discovered a 4.22 billon leva ($2.71 billion USD) hole in KTB's accounts, which is much higher than Bulgaria's debt ceiling. This is the nation's worst banking crisis in two decades. Right - Raymel Medina, 16, (center,) relaxes with friends after an evening dip in the water in the port city of Mariel, Cuba on April 20, 2015. He says he'd like to learn more about the world, but limited internet access makes this a challenge. Internet in Cuba is generally difficult to find, or prohibitively expensive. Travel outside of the island is also forbidden to most, except to those whose jobs allow it or have a government connection.Similarly, Bulgarians' longing to see lands beyond the closed borders of their country festered during the Communist years. Their travel opportunities were limited to pre-approved countries within the Eastern Bloc; Western nations were accessible with special government approval only.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 - Protesters against bank KTB (Corporate Commercial Bank) gather in front of the Bulgarian National Assembly in Bulgaria's capital Sofia, on November 06, 2014. KTB closed in June, its customers no longer able to access their money, and the majority owner Tsvetan Vasilev was indicted for corporate embezzlement in absentia and placed on Interpol's and Schengen's most wanted lists. Bulgaria's central bank subsequently discovered a 4.22 billon leva ($2.71 billion USD) hole in KTB's accounts, which is much higher than Bulgaria's debt ceiling. This is the nation's worst banking crisis in two decades.  

Right - Raymel Medina, 16, (center,) relaxes with friends after an evening dip in the water in the port city of Mariel, Cuba on April 20, 2015. He says he'd like to learn more about the world, but limited internet access makes this a challenge. Internet in Cuba is generally difficult to find, or prohibitively expensive. Travel outside of the island is also forbidden to most, except to those whose jobs allow it or have a government connection. 

Similarly, Bulgarians' longing to see lands beyond the closed borders of their country festered during the Communist years. Their travel opportunities were limited to pre-approved countries within the Eastern Bloc; Western nations were accessible with special government approval only. 

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.