Tobacco Leaf Sculptures
Cuba, a little island lost in the Caribbean region, has always been enveloped in a mysterious and romantic halo. Fidel Castro, the invincible, almost immortal leader of Cuban people; Che Guevarra, his loyal comrade, whose image became a trending element in the world fashion industry; Cuban cigars - no comments :); Cuban Rum - Havana Club, Bacardi - no comments again, I guess, you know what this means without my remarks. And finally a new name came on the scene - Janio Nuñez, a Cuban sculptor who creates his sculptors of famous people using the Cuban tobacco leaves.
The Cuban craftsman has been a torcedor before becoming a sculptor, and was obsessed by tobacco he even had to go to a psychologist. He saw other people, his friends and family made of tobacco, and couldn't quit the idea until his dream became a reality.
Nuñez' first work was the Indian head from the famous Cohiba label. He had to spent more than three weeks to meet the Habanos director and try to persuade him his works were worth seeing and exposing. That happened in 1998, and since then Janio Nuñez is a renowned sculptor and an honoured guest at various festivals, such as Havana Festival, and many others.
Besides sculpting various statuettes, Nuñez has also created the miniatures of Che Guevarra, Charlie Chaplin, Luciano Pavarotti, etc. but then he decided to make something even bigger and grandiose, and sculpted his first life-size statue of Churchill - a chain smoker of Cuban cigars.
The sculpture was gifted to the once British prime-minister's granddaughter Celia Sandys on her trip to Cuba.
All sculptures are made of Cuban tobacco leaves grown in the famous Vuelta Abajo region - this zone is famous for growing the best tobacco leaves for the best Cuban cigars. These sculptures are alwyas present at the annual Habanos Festival as a tribute to Cuban Art and Cuban culture in general.