We here at HaitiLuxe continue to be proud of the incredible work being done by Haitian artists. Haitian art is getting a global spotlight, at The Grand Palais no less! In their new exhibit they are showcasing Haitian art featuring Haitian artists from across history and borders using a verity of mediums. The exhibit titled “Haiti: Deux Siecles de Creations Artistiques” is sure to show the broad range and fantastic talents of the up and coming Haitian artists. We are so grateful for Regine Cuzin, freelance curator at the Grand Palais and founder of the association OCEA , for taking some time out of her busy schedule to answer some of our questions.
Q: What was your process like to select the artists to be featured in the exhibition?
A: The selection process was done in several stages. From the outset, some artists whose works were essential, whether contemporary or not, were chosen. Then other artists whose works came into resonance with the choices made were invited to form a coherent whole to put into perspective the contemporary design and create dialogues with ancient and modern works. The artists were selected primarily in Haiti, but also in the United States, France, Germany, Finland and Canada. Some have had the opportunity to create works specifically designed for exposure outside the Grand Palace and in the showroom.
Q: How are you balancing the mix of domestic Haitian art and the art from Haitians that have a globalized perspective?
A: Haitian society is comprised of multiple influences and is not absent from the concerns of the globalized world. Similarly, artists travel and whatever their places of creation, they also feed on external influences. The vast majority of artists in the exhibition live and work in Haiti. The exhibition is not to make comparisons or hierarchies between artists living in or out of Haiti, but to reveal points of convergence between them as preferred in the exhibition’s themes. However, the difference can be made more around the technical means available to artists to create their works where they live, especially in Haiti.
Q: What inspired you to put on this exhibit and what would you say are the most dominant themes of the exhibit?.
A:Devoid of artistic or historical chronology, the exhibition consists of four main chapters have titles in Creole. “Santit yo / No Songs” is popular and scenes of daily figures; “Lespri yo / Spirits” confronts works of profane or sacred: voodoo and Catholic religions, and symbols Freemasons; “Peyizaj yo / Landscapes” focuses the works ostracized in 1950-1960 for being too “contemporary”; “Yo head / Chefs” finally focuses on the construction of identity through the representation of the figures of Haitian political and intellectual power. These chapters are punctuated in the exhibition by three Tetatet / Head-to-Head making dialogue between two artists through their works.
The Grand Palace, an artistic landmark in Paris, is a beautiful setting to host the sixty artists and one hundred seventy works, which are presented, mostly for the first time, in France.
Q: How can the diaspora help boaster the economic viability of Haitian Art?
A: By inviting artists to participate in international exhibitions, to promote a network of collectors allowing artists to sell their works and live off their work, as well as offering these artists with creative residencies.
Once again, thank you to Regine Cuzin for answering our questions and to our wonderful editor Mary K. for her work. In addition, we would also like to thank the Public Relations team at Le Grand Palais for facilitating this Q&A.
Photo Source & Credits
Frantz Jacques Personal Facebook Page
Herve Telemaque Official Facebook Page
Grand Palais Official Facebook Page
Andre Eugene Credit:Credit:Didier Plowy pour la Rmn – Grand Palais