Fashion show blends Cuban private enterprise, US sponsorship

Models strutting in paint-stained shirts and leather construction boots have shed light on an unusual blend of Cuban private enterprise and American corporate sponsorship.

An open-air fashion show Thursday put on by the Cuban label Clandestina and internet giant Google was titled “Country Under Construction” and took place outside Havana’s Museum of Fine Arts.

Google is one of the American companies that have had the greatest success in building relations with the Cuban government since the declaration of detente by Presidents Raul Castro and Barack Obama. It has installed Google servers in Cuba to speed up company services such as YouTube and has carried out smaller cultural projects like the fashion show.

Clandestina founder Idania del Rio said: “Google provides something that inspires us.”