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9905: Genevieve Esper (fwd)
From: leonie hermantin <email@example.com>
Exhibit shows joy and beauty of artist's Haiti
By Liz Doup
Posted December 6 2001
Before Genevieve Esper became a noted artist, before traveling the world,
studying in Paris and showing her work in South Florida and New York, she
was a young girl in Haiti, absorbing its colors, its sights and its moods.
In her art, she has never left home.
This month, Esper's work, so evocative of her homeland, is part of a
celebration of Haitian culture running through Dec. 21 at the Broward County
Haiti: From a Legacy of Freedom to an Explosion of Culture also will feature
music, film and discussions by authors and scholars.
"You read so much about what is bad in Haiti, but I can tell you, there is
joy in that place," says Esper. "And there is much beauty."
These cultural events will showcase a part of Haitian life often
overshadowed by the poverty and political strife that dominate headlines.
With South Florida's Haitian population at an estimated 300,000 and growing,
it's important for people to learn more about that culture, says Margaret
Armand, vice president of A.C.T.I.O.N., a nonprofit organization that
promotes Haitian arts and culture and one of the event sponsors.
"We want people to see that we're all human, we're all the same," Armand
says. "Art is a way to do that."
Esper, who goes by Iris in the art world, was an architect before turning to
art a decade ago. She paints at her home in Port-au-Prince, working outside
under a jungle-like canopy, surrounded by hundreds of orchids.
She fills canvases with vibrant colors -- scarlet, gold and blue. She turns
calabasa squash into objects of art, studded with semiprecious stones. She
takes castoff metal drums and forms them into elaborate sculptures.
"People can find their own message in what I do," she says. "You don't
create art for yourself. You create art for other people."
In addition to Esper's art, which is on display throughout the exhibit,
other events include:
A piano recital of classical and folklore music by noted musician Micheline
Laudun Denis, 7 p.m. Friday.
A discussion on Haiti: An Endless Source of Literary Inspiration, by Haitian
authors Edwidge Danticat and Dany Laferriere, 5-7 p.m. Saturday.
A showing of La Peur d'Aimer, a film produced and directed by Reginald
Lubin, who is also a medical doctor, 7-9 p.m. Dec. 14.
A discussion on Haitian Identity and Integration into American Society, 5-7
p.m. Dec. 15. Speakers include Dr. Jean-Pierre Bayard, an engineering
professor at California State University, Sacramento; Max Beauvoir, a Vodun
priest; Philipe Brutus, state representative; Gerard Latortue, international
business consultant; and Michel-Rolph Trouillot, professor of anthropology
and social sciences at Johns Hopkins University.
A showing of LUMUMBA, produced and directed by Raoul Peck, president of the
Caribbean Federation of Film and Video, 7 p.m. Dec. 21.
Liz Doup can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 954-356-4722.
Copyright © 2001, South Florida Sun-Sentinel
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