The subjects of my portraits are mostly Cuban. They represent various ages, races, classes, religious beliefs and non-beliefs. But they all share a universal longing for a better life, and this yearning was expressed in their pilgrimages to the revered tomb of La Milagrosa (“The Miraculous One”). According to local legend, 24-year-old Amelia Goyri de Adot died in childbirth in 1901. She was laid to rest with the body of her dead child between her feet in the Cristóbal Colón cemetery in Havana, Cuba. When she was exhumed some years later, word quickly spread that her body was found intact – a sign of holiness to many, something supernatural to others – and that her baby was now cradled in her arms. Amelia’s tomb soon became a shrine visited daily.
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