Parrandas Photo Workshop
with Arien Chang
& Kasia Trojak

Parrandas Celebration

Havana, Remedios
& Caibarién, Cuba

6 Days
Dec 22 - Dec 27,

Experience a Celebration that takes one year in the making and travel through Cuba with us in a 6 Day Intensive Street Photography Shooting and Editing Workshop

Workshop Includes:

  • Accomodations in Havana and Via Clara Province (Remedios & Caibarién)
  • Taxis to/from airport and to Remedios & Caibarién
  • Welcome Dinner in Havana & All Breakfasts
  • Arien Chang Studio Visit and Work Presentation
  • Photo Critiques, Portfolio Review, Selection and Sequencing to create a publishable story about the celebration
  • A Small Group Experience, Individual Shooting and feedback time with Arien Chang

The workshop starts in Havana. Then we travel to Remedios and Caibarién. Please plan to arrive on Dec 22 and depart Dec 27. 
Workshop Doesn’t Include:

  • Airfare, meals (other than breakfast and welcome dinner) 
  • Travel Insurance
  • Cuba Visa

A detailed itinerary outlining the schedule for each day, a packing list and a Cuba Preparation Kit will be sent to all participants. 

This workshop satisfies the OFAC “Suport for the Cuban People” requirement for US Citizens.
All Images © Arien Chang

COST : $3,500 ($500 Deposit to Hold a Spot)
EARLY BIRD PRICE: $3,000 (until June 1, 2024)
*Minimum number of participants must be confirmed before workshop is a go

What are Las Parrandas?

Las Parrandas—the oldest cultural festival of Cuba originating in its eighth oldest town—represents a vital piece of Cuba’s heritage and tradition through folkloric celebrations of epic proportions. What began as an effort to remedy diminishing attendance at mass just ahead of Christmas in the village of Remedios in 1820, later spread to 17 sites across the country. Remarkable spectacles of light, color, sounds, and form distinguish the festivities, particularly in the central Cuban towns of Remedios and Caibarién. Every year in December coinciding with the Aguinaldo Masses in veneration to Novena del Niño Jesus, highly participatory ceremonies spanning dance, music, and traditional crafts have sustained an authentic tradition over several generations of Cubans. 

The celebrations involve grand installations of colorful flashing lights, numerous floats of massive sizes, ridiculous quantities of fireworks, flying discs, and all sorts of pyrotechnics one can imagine. Yet, the true essence of Las Parrandas lies not in the grandeur of its floats and installations, rather in the atmosphere that envelops the village plaza—one of festive oomph soaked in by tens of thousands of faces beguiled by the smoke, lights, food, and piercing explosions. Las Parrandas captures the festive quintessence of the interiors of Cuba and is one of the most emblematic community expressions of the people living in the small towns, some being the original villages established by the Spanish. During those seven or eight nights in December, the skies in Remedios can hardly be seen. The unrelenting fireworks make locals and visitors take refuge under the house porticos in the city that proudly celebrates more than five centuries of existence.  

LEARN MORE  ︎︎︎ HERE     

Arien Chang
(Workshop Instructor) is a Cuban photographer based in New York City. At the beginning of his career as an artist, he devoted himself to painting, and later discovered in photography both the expression of his personality and a way to document recondite settings in Cuba. He has had solo exhibitions at Thomas Nickel Project in New York, Art Basel Miami, Fototeca de Cuba, Fabrica de Arte  Cubano in Havana, X88 Gallery in Sydney and Dots Gallery in Prague.  He has participated in multiple group shows including Reportage Sydney Documentary and Street Photography Festival, NY Photo Visura Festival, Havana Biennial, Oregon’s Emerald Art Center, Freies Museum Berlin, and Havana’s Museo Nacional de Bellas Artes. He has given lectures at the Columbia University, Parsons School of Design, ICP, Cuban Ludwig Foundation, ISA Higher Institute of Art in Havana and has taught street and documentary photography at Santa Fe Workshops and National Geographic expeditions. He is a recepient of the Raúl Corrales scholarship (Havana, 2009), Red Gate Residency (Beijing, 2013), and Havana Club’s Havana Cultura 3rd Edition Scholarship (2013).

Kasia Trojak (Workshop Producer) is a Polish-born, Los Angeles-based photographer and assistant director. She has worked on the director’s team on over sixty Hollywood studio feature films and television shows, responsible for coordinating logistics and organization of daily operations. In her photographic practice, she specializes in portrait, editorial and documentary while exploring ideas of authenticity, a sense of belonging and mis/placement. In 2020, she was recognized by the British Journal of Photography as one of the twenty “Female In Focus” photographers and her winning photograph has been published online in The Guardian, The Times UK and Vogue Italia. Her photographs have been exhibited in multiple group shows in Los Angeles, New York, London, Italy, Poland and Mexico, with two solo exhibitions in Havana. She is a member of Directors Guild of America and Women Street Photographers.

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