"The Fight Doctor"

Pacheco’s Art Of The Cubans in Exile

by Ferdie Pacheco M.D



Over the past forty years, thousands of Cuban exiles have crossed the Florida straits and made Miami their home. Not only did they change the face of an entire city, they created an exciting new American culture. Bringing the soul of Havana with them, they re-energized Miami’s commerce and community life, and authored a unique chapter in the history of immigrants in the United States. In his book, Ferdie Pacheco depicts the lives of these brave people, and offers readers a fascinating collection of their personal stories.

Much of Pacheco’s work possesses a strong narrative quality that brings to life the experiences of the Cuban exile community. Those paintings which tell no stories per se, are explained with colorful anecdotes, as in the Quince: The Last Fitting (page 30) which includes essays on the customs of the “Quince” celebration in Cuban life.

All of Pacheco’s paintings are highly personal statements born of actual events experienced at his Calle Ocho medical practice, which he opened in 1960 to help indigent Cuban refugees. Whenever possible, he allows these refugees to tell their own stories. Other times, he relates his own experiences on the colorful streets of Miami, as in the Vigil: Call Them and They Will Come (p 60), The Loneliness of the Late Breaking News (p 68), Sunday Shutout (p 29) and The Cubans are Coming (p 25).

    Pacheco’s Art Of The Cubans In Exile is not a history of Cuban  emigration all over the world, rather it is a complication of his  firsthand observations and reminiscences of Miami,  as seen from  the windows of his medical practice. With this book, Ferdie Pacheco  hopes to inspire other Cuban writers, painters and filmmakers to  celebrate the lives of Cuban exiles in New York, Chicago, Tampa, ersey City, Boston and elsewhere.



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