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Cuban Evolution Joakim Eskildsen
An old American car, long a staple of Cuban roads, sits along Guanabo Beach, near Havana.Joakim Eskildsen for TIME
Cuban Evolution Joakim Eskildsen
Cuban Evolution Joakim Eskildsen
Cuban Evolution Joakim Eskildsen
Cuban Evolution Joakim Eskildsen
Cuban Evolution Joakim Eskildsen
Cuban Evolution Joakim Eskildsen
Cuban Evolution Joakim Eskildsen
Cuban Evolution Joakim Eskildsen
Cuban Evolution Joakim Eskildsen
Cuban Evolution Joakim Eskildsen
Cuban Evolution Joakim Eskildsen
Cuban Evolution Joakim Eskildsen
Cuban Evolution Joakim Eskildsen
Cuban Evolution Joakim Eskildsen
Cuban Evolution Joakim Eskildsen
Cuban Evolution Joakim Eskildsen
Cuban Evolution Joakim Eskildsen
Cuban Evolution Joakim Eskildsen
Cuban Evolution Joakim Eskildsen
Cuban Evolution Joakim Eskildsen
Cuban Evolution Joakim Eskildsen
Cuban Evolution Joakim Eskildsen
Cuban Evolution Joakim Eskildsen
Cuban Evolution Joakim Eskildsen
Cuban Evolution Joakim Eskildsen
Cuban Evolution Joakim Eskildsen
Cuban Evolution Joakim Eskildsen
Cuban Evolution Joakim Eskildsen
Cuban Evolution Joakim Eskildsen
Cuban Evolution Joakim Eskildsen
Cuban Evolution Joakim Eskildsen
Cuban Evolution Joakim Eskildsen
Cuban Evolution Joakim Eskildsen
Cuban Evolution Joakim Eskildsen
Cuban Evolution Joakim Eskildsen
Cuban Evolution Joakim Eskildsen
Cuban Evolution Joakim Eskildsen
Cuban Evolution Joakim Eskildsen
Cuban Evolution Joakim Eskildsen
An old American car, long a staple of Cuban roads, sits along Guanabo Beach, near Havana.
Joakim Eskildsen for TIME
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Witness Cuba's Evolution in 39 Photos

Dec 17, 2014

“For centuries, Cuba’s greatest resource has been its people,” writes Pico Iyer in an extended essay on the Caribbean nation in the July 8, 2013 issue of TIME. In the twilight of the Castro era, Cubans are finding that change brings both hope and anxiety.

To pair with Iyer’s tome, TIME called upon Danish photographer Joakim Eskildsen. Eskildsen, who previously photographed a large portfolio for TIME on the state of poverty in America, traveled to Cuba for ten days, photographing urban housing projects in Havana and rural settlements across the countryside. With the help of local journalist Abel Gonzalez Alayon, Eskildsen photographed tobacco plantations, roadside fruit vendors, migrant workers and beachfront resorts — capturing all in the vibrant saturation of medium-format color film.

“I immediately fell in awe with the complexity of this country,” says Eskildsen. “The more you learn about the situation and how people are living, the more difficult it becomes to understand. It was like learning to view the world from a Cuban angle that kept surprising and inspiring me.”

To read Pico Iyer’s extended essay on Cuba, subscribe here. Already a subscriber? Click here.

Joakim Eskildsen is a Danish photographer based in Berlin. LightBox previously featured Eskildsen’s Home Works and Below the Line: Portraits of American Poverty.

Abel Gonzalez Alayon is a journalist based in Cuba. Follow him on Twitter @abelcuba

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