Once again the cultural and creative industries on the table

The generating center or nucleus of the culture industry it is the creation, and this implies all the spirituality of the creator, all his worldview of the world that surrounds him; art becomes a chronicler of the life of a society, it expresses the conflicts, the contradictions, while the industry is the process, the tool by which this artistic creation can reach the spaces that deserve, need, want to enjoy and be spiritually enriched.

Such a concept in the voice of an authority such as Tania García Lorenzo, Ph.D. in Economic Sciences, continues to be useful to reach a consensus, and to be clear that not all artistic or editorial work is merchandise, although the economy cuts across all processes or sectors, and as part of it, logistics, the organization of production and distribution, to name a few edges, are present in the slightest realization.

On Sunday, December 18, the television program Squaring the box returned to discuss (for the second time) the issue of cultural and creative industries in Cubaand both Tania García and Tania Delgado Fernández, vice president of the Cuban Institute of Art and Cinematographic Industry (ICAIC), and Fernando León Jacomino, vice minister of Culture, brought new perspectives and ideas in the midst of a rich debate.

What happens is that there are prejudices and taboos such as identifying the cultural industry with the system of economic relations established by the large international monopolies, and that interpretation that the concept of the cultural industry is exclusively or directly associated with the system of appropriation and expropriation relations. of the resources that it generates results in an exceeded confusion, considers the expert.

But he clarifies that without an industry there are no books, films or other artistic manifestations that carry -some more than others- certain processes.

Each concept transits according to the times in which it reflects them, and the cultural explosion itself in the world and the presence of culture and art in people’s daily lives, has made the development of the cultural industry necessary. Garcia Lorenzo specified.


The panelists of Squaring the box They coincided in emphasizing that culture is a system of values, of thoughts; they are our roots or identities, and what is generated from the artistic creation that expresses that culture are cultural products, goods or services that can travel through various channels, including commercial mechanisms.

So in this case they would not be merchandise, for example, the teaching books that go to our schools and universities, and are not sold but are distributed free of charge as a public service of the State to strengthen education.

According to León Jacomino, any act of creation can lead to a productive process. Thus, a musician composes a solo song but needs the accompaniment of a group, and in turn reach the viewer. Therefore, it is not enough to have a work or to produce the record, but you have to look at issues such as the location, that it meets the basic conditions, if it is an open space, audio, food, transportation…

And this is the case with musical, theatrical, dance, and circus shows, among others, whose insurance, expenses, or productive and organizational support become an invisible process for the public.

Today there is an important debate in Cuban society around the always conflictive relationship between creation and the market. It is not possible to avoid the economic dimension of any cultural project, not only because it is forced in the creative process itself, but also because its projections will determine the scope of the cultural fact itself, he states in an article on Cultural production as a direct productive force in Cuba, Tania Garcia Lorenzo.

In his opinion, it is becoming increasingly evident that cultural policy needs to be accompanied by an economic policy for culture, with a strategic design that supports the comprehensive and integrated economic cycle, which goes from creation to consumption, in order to achieve the conversion of that creative act in a cultural event, moment in which the message is apprehended by the receiver and at the same time, it becomes a source of income and employment, for the creator and their families and for the economy of the whole society.

In the conditions of a country like Cuba, with material and financial limitations but full of talent and the innovative spirit of its people, the ICAIC vice president, in addition to specifying that audiovisual and film production are part of the cultural and creative industries scheme, He highlighted in the program how much imagination, desire to invent, to create, the Animation Studios of that institution have had since its inception.

Tania Delgado added that a cartoon production is not similar to a documentary one, since each one has its peculiarity; And throughout this process -which begins from the conception of the idea until the work is finished- there is an intervention of the people who work with the budgets, which are drawn up in great detail, where each thing is accounted for and has a value. included.


According to Vice Minister Jacomino, “although we are talking about processes that have their origin in the creative act of an artist, of a writer, it would be a mistake to think that the entire value chain of this work can be resolved from the Ministry of Culture.

The first thing to do is understand this as a country resource and a system, because the leadership of the Revolution is asking us with increasing intensity to convert the socialization of our best products into country policy, to allow and participate in that implementation. in value of art all the institutions, the organisms of the central administration of the state, the territorial governments.

The same happens with music, we have to search for those who have premises or other resources, chain all these actors, unite efforts and wills to complete a favorable ecosystem, so that the cultural product can be enjoyed in the territories. by the spectators, pointed out the official in Squaring the box.

Another example was given by Tania Delgado when she explained what was established to be done with those films that were produced and could not be exhibited or distributed for the enjoyment of the public, due to a lack of resources or suitable mechanisms. So on November 11, 2020, the policy for the recovery of cinema areas as multi-purpose spaces is approved.

One of the premises it raises is that local governments manage movie theaters, except in Havana, since ICAIC is in charge of that, and this presupposes that a film cannot be made without stopping to think about the territories and their needs. , pointed out the vice president of the institute.

In the same way that there are movie theaters in a state of deterioration and need to be transformed, there are also art galleries, bookstores, close to two thousand cultural institutions throughout the country, and it is very interesting to see how much is being developed in those places regarding the creative process but you have to invest in maintenance, repair or improvement, warned the Doctor of Economic Sciences.


Jacomino clarified that although they can contribute income “we cannot go desperately in search of self-financing and compromise the work we have in the distribution of a certain type of content, which truly contributes to the spiritual growth of people.”

According to Tania García Lorenzo, the challenge of cultural development from each territory presupposes strengthening the recording industry, the creative publishing movement, all those mechanisms that allow the realization of the artistic and literary creation of cultural expressions.

And this strengthening will allow us to assimilate the growing movement of actresses and actors, of creators who each year leave our artistic teaching classrooms; but we need those students who graduate, who are making art from school or university, to have the space to produce in the continuation of their lives.

León Jacomino explained that a part of that potential or artistic production, for example, the symphonic movement, of main concert bands, the theater itself, does not submit to the battle of the market; although they do work with supply and demand mechanisms for music and an area of ​​performing arts associated with circus art.

Then there is also the factor of exporting our music, another aspect of the industry. You don’t just have to distribute, you can export that product; but all this implies a formation of competence, of an infrastructure that we have to strengthen more and more, said the vice minister.

At the same time, in the effort to accommodate certain demands or needs, it is necessary to diversify the spaces, the sources of employment, it is necessary to go to forms of relationship with the spectator, or as the President (Miguel Díaz-Canel) said in the Congress of the UNEAC, to go to forms of management that are related to the real economy, that the State is not only the only financier or contractor of these artists, the official limited.

The truth is that in the Cuban cultural and creative industries there is great economic potential, and it is urgent to broaden the outlook, strengthen business activity, increase investment as one of the many paths to follow.


Although the aforementioned television program of Canal Caribe did not talk about the events or festivals that are held every year in Cuba, even though they are closely linked to the cultural and creative industries, due to what they contribute from the spiritual and economic aspects, it would be worth It is worth a space to analyze its impact, as well as elaborate on how much this sector contributes to the Gross Domestic Product of the country, to reduce the fiscal deficit.

Personalities from the world of arts and lovers of artistic genres come together in Havana and in other cities of the country to enjoy these meetings together with the population, all with worldwide prestige and recognition.

Not exempt from difficulties in its implementation and periodicity, since we cannot forget the impact of COVID-19, it is worth mentioning the international festivals Jazz Plaza, the Alicia Alonso Havana Ballet, the Gibara Poor Cinema, the Changüí, the Salsa in Cuba, Varadero Josone, the New Latin American Cinema, Fiesta del Tambor, French Cinema in Cuba, Havana World Music (HWM), Piña Colada and La Huella de España, among others.

Let us add to that list the Havana Biennial (visual arts), the international Book and Craft Fairs, the carnivals of Havana and Santiago de Cuba, the Caribbean Festival in this Hero City, the Ibero-American Culture Festival, as well as the courses or workshops with foreign visitors that usually take place during the summer.

These are events that keep the artistic and cultural flame of the nation alive, and also leave dividends for the country, and I mention them because in their successful realization are the contribution, the mark, the fruit of the Cuban cultural and creative industries.

Once again the cultural and creative industries on the table