The Symbol Che
Surely, this photograph, taken on March 5, 1960, one rather cool day
when Che participated in the farewell ceremony of mourning for the
sabotage victims of the French ship "La Coubre", is the most widely
reproduced image in the whole world. With this image an icon of a
flesh and bone human was created, adored by many and hated by
For Alberto Diaz Gutierrez (known as Korda), it was part of a collective work of art. He died at
age 72, having the privilege of writing in life that:
"... I was lucky to take that picture and leave something for humanity. I don't
leave great palaces, yachts, or other things, but I leave a sample of my work in
my passage through this world.
In the eyes of Che, in his stare, at that recise moment his whole character is
drawn, painted, written. It is more than a dream, it is the struggle of one man
for what he believed in right up until the end of his life; it was not a dream
because his thoughts and dreams were real, so what is left for humans but to
fight for the things we believe in. It's the only thing that gives substance
to your life.
The beauty of this life is to dedicate your energy with what little you can do
to help others, and Che to the end of his life did that. For me he is an immortal
hero and history will remember him as that."
The photograph taken by Korda, helped strengthen the idea of Ernesto Guevara as an icon, an
image that became more famous than the Mona Lisa, which up until then was the absolute art icon.
It was said that Korda took just two photographs of Che Guevara that day.
The photograph itself would not have the slightest value if there had not been an interest group
that protected it, anointed it and gave it the significance that it now has, converting it into
an archetype rather than an addition to human knowledge.