As a white denizen in a black culture I am aware of the human dilemma of those descendants of West African slaves. When the Haitian people attempted to wrest control of their lives from “Baby Doc” Duvalier, through the democratic exhortations of Father Aristide, I and the rest of the world saw the internecine dilemmas of the descendants of slavery exacerbated to the point of butchery, by their opposition the ‘Tonton Macoutes’.This series is a reaction. My focus has been guided by the appearance of physical materials as keys.The door in this piece belonged to a resident of my block. A maniacally happy seeming man, whose interior world, when viewed at night, revealed a room lit by a single bulb, and bedecked, pasted and painted with hundreds of crosses. From one ceiling corner emanated a dozen wires, radiating out above the room with colored balls of every sort threaded onto them.The blue door (front door), gained impetus as the blue field of an American flag and the Haitian escape / objective of immigration. The objective then became to create the image of the flag. With split buoy stakes I attempted to gain enough material for the stripes, but during the cutting sequence these subsequent orbs appeared. The aspect of voudoun more or less inserted itself to the design. One afternoon a statuesque blonde woman visited the studio on an unrelated matter. When her eyes fell upon this piece, without an explanation, she cried out, “My God, it looks like Haiti”. I then learned that she was ‘white’ Haitian.
THE HAITIAN DREAM (Facade)1993wood, metal103”x103”x 8”Artist collection