Collecting Cuban art began early in the marriage of Silvio and Jean Hernández. Born into sugar families in Havana and New York, respectively, they first lived in Europe in the 1950s where as a young couple they socialized with leading international collectors and artists and gained an appreciation for modern art. After moving to Cuba in 1958 they began assembling a focused collection that included masterpieces from the Cuban vanguardia. Their remarkable holdings included works by Amelia Peláez, René Portocarrero, Raúl Milián, Cundo Bermúdez, and Carlos Enríquez. During this period and up to their exile from Cuba in late 1960, they befriended artists, visited their studios and formed the majority of their collection, always acquiring works directly from the artists or their families. Their close friendship with Isabetta Enríquez, Carlos Enríquez’s daughter, led to the acquisition of El Hurón Azul, and Elegía a Jesús Menéndez, two of the artist’s most iconic works. Christie’s is delighted to present this collection of outstanding twentieth-century Cuban paintings by some of the leading exponents of the vanguardia movement.