HAVANA, Cuba, July 29, 2013, David Canela / www.cubanet.org.-The civic project Estado de SATS this Saturday celebrated its three years of existence with a children’s party. About 10:30 in the morning Rodiles’ house was full. At the party two clowns performed, exciting the children with games, dances, songs and puppets. Children’s music videos were also projected.
Estado de SATS was born as an event of dialog between the actors of civil society, who attended in many voices and independent groups (artistic, religious, legal, community) to talk about the the future of Cuba. It was held in Gaia House in Old Havana, between 23rd and 25th on 25 July 2010. As the meeting led to open debate, outside an established script, the project was censored, and no other State institution was permitted (or risked) to host it again.
For this reason, Antonio González-Rodiles, one of the principal coordinators, decided to resume it in his own house, in the municipality of Playa. The original idea of the project, of being a marketplace of social diversity, and a public space for alternative ideas–beyond the narrow limits of official discourse ideological–crystallized again on March 5, 2011, when Raudel Collazo and Adrián Monzón were invited to speak about their artistic projects. Since then (and with the exception of Festival Click), the sessions are no longer structured as a “mini-conference” but as a meeting for a specific topic.
Since then, in March 2011, it adopted the slogan Where art and thought converge. In its three years of work, they have held panels, interviews, screened documentaries and films–which had not been shown before in Cuba–poetry recitals and one of short stories (with the writer Ángel Santiesteban), parties, presentations and music concerts, independent project fairs, exhibitions of photographs, art, cartoons and publicity spots.
Over time they have created some spaces or specialized programs, such as Analysis Forum (FORA), for political, social and legal debate, Cinema at All Costs, for the display of audiovisuals, and recently CafeSatso, devoted to literature.
Other independent projects have collaborated with Estado de SATS: Omni-Zona Franca, the Endless Poetry Festival, Voces Cubanas, the Cuban Law Association, Cubalex, EBE (of Spain), Talento Cubano, among others. Many people in the diaspora and Cubans in exile, through speeches and videotaped interviews, media outreach, or the donation of works (for example, the exposition of CoCodriloSmile graphic humor). In addition, Radio and TV Marti and Cubanet have helped to broadcast some of their programs.
From March 2011 to June of the current year, there have been around 66 meetings (one of them when Antonio Rodiles was imprisoned in November of last year). Of these programs, 30 were held with the public and 35 with no audience. One had to be suspended due to police repression; those who could were able to get there recorded his testimony.
Estado de SATS is also the civil society project that promotes the Citizen Demand For Another Cuba, which calls on the Cuban government to ratify the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights and the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights.
Monday, 29 July 2013, from CubaNet
29 July 2013