If it weren’t for that one photograph, Che Guevara may have just been another South American revolutionary.
I’ll bet you haven’t heard of Sandino, Mujico or Marti…
But Guevara has something about him.
That indefinable X-factor.
Here’s what makes him one of the most in-demand signers around
He might be the greatest icon of the 20th century
Fashion photographer Albert Korda took his iconic “Guerrillero Heroico” photo of Guevara at a memorial service in Havana on March 5, 1960.
In 1967, an Italian publisher and communist named Giangiacomo Feltrinelli got hold of Guevara’s diary in Bolivia.
He wanted to publish it, but he needed photos and went to Korda.
When Korda showed him Guerrillero Heroico, Feltrinelli was blown away.
On his return to Italy he began distributing both diary and image.
Just as the image became famous, Guevara was killed by CIA-backed Bolivian troops.
The Guerrillero Heroico became a rallying icon for leftists. But over time its meaning shifted to something less specific.
It was co-opted as a symbol of youthful rebellion worldwide.
By the end of the 1960s Guevara was one of the world’s most recognisable faces.
He rarely signed anything
Guevara spent much of his short life engaged in guerrilla warfare.
He didn’t have a lot of time to sign autographs.
The few on the market today are from his brief tenure in the Cuban government (1959-1965).
Soon he was off to fight in the Congo and then on to Bolivia.
You’ll find most of his autographs on official documents and certificates. And these are still illegal to take out of the country.
Signed photographs are impossibly rare.
I’ve seen three throughout my entire career.
He died young
For the young firebrands of the 1960s, Guevara’s death looked like martyrdom.
He was just 39 when he was executed in 1967.
It ensured Guevara remained the symbol of youthful rebellion.
He’s still Guerrillero Heroico…
Gazing out on the world with that quiet rage and stoicism.
And so he exists out of time.
Every generation discovers him anew and draws strength from his spirit.
And it’s that constant process of renewal that ensures demand for his autograph long into the future.
PS. I have an ultra-rare signed certificate from Che Guevara for sale. Click here to take a look.
PPS. Do you have a Che Guevara autograph you’re looking to sell? I may be able to help. Get in touch today at email@example.com.