Filmaker Leah Gordon follows contemporary Haitian artists Celeur, Èugene, Claude and Guyodo into their studios, on the Grand Rue, in the ramshackle ghetto in Port au Prince. Her 2009 film is a glimpse into a culture steeped in African and Haitian traditions, where vodou is both a way of life and the source material for much of the artists phantasmagoric sculptures. With grace and an eye focused on the creative spirit of the artists who live and make their monumental, and mesmerizing sculptures out of the debris of an economy in distress, the filmmaker records the young Haitian artists’ power and sheer genius.
The artists surprise repeatedly, with their insights, and eloquence, but especially with their work, which is the essence of the haunting, the nightmarish, … and the whimsical. A powerful film about channeling the spirit of art, a truly remarkable document… it’s an enlightening documentary not without its spookier moments.
We link to the filmmaker’s website here.
Nottingham Contemporary, one of the UK’s largest exhibition spaces located on one of the oldest sites in Nottingham presents Kafou: Haiti, Art and Vodou, a show of Haitian art – nearly 200 paintings, sculptures … and sequined flags by 35 artists from the 40s to the present. “Vodou’s host of spirits who interact with everyday life inform much of Haiti’s culture. The exhibition’s title, Kafou, means “crossroads” in the Haitian Creole language. Crossroads have great significance for Vodou, since they are the place where the world of the living and the world of the spirits meet. Kafou is himself one of the lwas, as the Vodou spirits are called.”
The above sculpture is “Societé” (2010) by Celeur Jean Hérard.
The show is curated by Alex Farquharson and Leah Gordon.
Kafou: Haiti, Art and Vodou
Until the 6th of January, 2013
Tuesday – Friday 10am – 7pm
Holidays and Saturdays 10am – 6pm
Sunday 11am – 5pm
Closed on Mondays, except Holidays during the exhibition.