ARES (artist)

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Aristides Esteban Hernandez Guerrero (ARES) (born 1963) is an artist and illustrator living in Cuba.



Interview (2020)

  • Psychiatry and comics have a lot in common, because they are related to the thinking of people I care about very much.
  • Doctors cure diseases for humans, and cartoonists cure diseases for society. Humor can promote people's understanding of the complex conditions in contemporary society.
  • People often confuse jokes with humor, but my humor is very serious. I not only make people laugh, but also make people reflect and analyze.

Interview (2002)

  • I decided to do this because of a personal interest, and because I was totally convinced of what I had to do. The position of a professional here doesn’t greatly differ in economic status from that of any other productive activity, so it wasn’t something that would have a great effect on me. It is true that I won’t have the same degree of stability, but that’s the risk you take to do what you really want.
  • the essential thing for a cartoonist is information. The more information you have “laid down” in your head, the more options you will have to create cartoons that are not trite or repetitive, and the better your ideas will be. This also presupposes a work ethic that requires you to rediscover yourself every day, and allows you to avoid “easy” solutions.
  • The initial influences on my work are in the work that was developed in Cuba in the humor magazine Dedeté [DDT], which avoids “pamphletizing” [crude propagandizing] and looks for new forms of communication … for non-traditional esthetic solutions. That’s where my style starts out.
  • Participation in international humor events has brought me many other influences. My work style includes a large dose of “esthetic vampirism,” in that I’ve absorbed a lot from a lot of different people. But I have a central axis, my major cartoon characters, who have been changing in their own right along with the changes in the type of humor that I happen to be doing.
  • It’s impossible that in any society everyone will be in favor of the government. This happens here also. These folks are in the minority, as far as I can see, and, anyway, it has to be that way – if it were not so, this Revolution would not have lasted more than 40 years, 90 miles from the U.S.
  • My cartoons are published in various media outlets, not only in Latin America but also in Europe, Asia and the U.S. In some cases, I’ve gotten paid for them, in others not. In most cases, what they pay me is truly miserable, but I persist, with the happiness of seeing my work reproduced and accepted by many people.
  • The role of political art in Cuba is a big one. The newspaper where I have worked for years makes major use of editorial cartoons, and on not a few occasions the front page is a full-page cartoon.
  • you will find Cuban heavy metal musicians, or rappers, along with those who play salsa – all outside influences are accepted without problems.
  • This isn’t a perfect country; we have lots of difficulties and many things that need to be improved, and many things that need to change. But we also have many things that are worthy of admiration, things that just about no other country of the so-called third world has achieved, or will achieve for a long time.
  • What does bother me as a Cuban and an intellectual worker is that from the United States they’re trying to tell us Cubans what to do. President Bush recently called for democracy in Cuba; but I can’t explain to myself what moral standing he has, to give democracy lessons to my country, he being a president who got to the White House after fraudulent elections.
  • To top it off, he wants to bomb any country that he pleases, using a slogan that a country is “antidemocratic” – which simply means that anyone who is not for him is against him, and thus a potential target of attack. According to Bush, here you can see the “socialist hell.” Well, in that case, rather than prohibiting U. S. citizens from traveling to Cuba, they should do as the writer Eduardo Galeano suggested: organize tourist excursions so people could see these “horrors.”