A Conversation Celebrating PÒTOPRENS

Join Pioneer Works for a special conversation celebrating the forthcoming publication of PÒTOPRENS: The Urban Artists of Port-au-Prince at NADA Miami, within a presentation of artists’ book publishers organized by Printed Matter and EXILE Books. Together, artist and curator Edouard Duval-Carrié, artist André Eugène, and curator and editor Leah Gordon will reflect on the landmark 2018 exhibition at Pioneer Works, and the themes and artistic voices highlighted within the companion book. The conversation will be moderated by oungan Jean-Daniel Lafontant, who served as a special advisor to the project.

The conversation will be followed by a celebration at the Center for Subtropical Affairs, featuring musical performances by Kriz Rara and Khalbass, and food by Chef Creole. Learn more.

Printed in both English and Haitian Kreyòl, PÒTOPRENS is a map-like reflection of the urban landscape and a new geography of popular production. The city of Port-au-Prince is a polyphonic metropolis that declares its past via multiple voices; in this volume, the city’s complex present is evoked through artworks, images, testimonies, and essays. These contents are organized around distinct zones of artistic production—urban neighborhoods identified with particular subjects, materials, and forms. Focusing on 14 of these areas’ exemplary artists, PÒTOPRENS mirrors the geography of the city that inspired it.

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About the Panelists

Edouard Duval-Carrié is an artist and curator who was born in Haiti and raised in several countries, including Puerto Rico and Canada. He was educated at McGill University, Loyola University, and at the École Nationale Supérieure des Beaux-Arts. While his work shows a cosmopolitan diversity, Haiti remains his major inspiration. Duval-Carrié’s widely exhibited work has been catalogued in six books and is featured in numerous permanent collections including the Perez Art Museum, the Frost Art Museum, the Musée du Panthéon National Haïtien, and the Musée National des Arts d’Afrique et d’Océanie in Paris. His exhibition Decolonizing Refinement was presented at the FSU Museum of Fine Arts and will continue to the Fondation Clément in Le Francois, Martinique and Florida Atlantic University in Boca Raton, Florida. He is the recipient of many awards, residencies, and public commissions such as the Florida Consortium and USArtist. He co-curated the exhibitions PÒTOPRENS: The Urban Artists of Port-au-Prince at Pioneer Works and MOCA North Miami; and Visionary Aponte at the Little Haiti Cultural Center in Miami, the KJCC at New York University, and the Power Plant Gallery at Duke University.

André Eugène is a sculptor and co-founder of the artist collective Atis Rezistans from the Grand Rue. In 2006, the International Slavery Museum in Liverpool, England commissioned Eugène, Jean Hérard Céleur, and Guyodo to produce the Freedom! sculpture, a permanent exhibition at the entrance to the museum. Since 2009, he has been the co-director of the Ghetto Biennale held in his neighborhood. Eugène’s work has been exhibited at the Grand Palais, Paris, France (2014); the Fowler Museum, Los Angeles, CA (2012); the Musée de la Civilisation, Quebec City, Canada (2012); Nottingham Contemporary, Nottingham, UK (2012); the Haiti Pavilion at the 54th Venice Biennale, Venice, Italy (2011); the Parc de la Villette, Paris, France (2009); the Global Caribbean Project at Art Basel, Miami Beach, FL (2009); the Musée d’Ethnographie, Geneva, Switzerland (2008); Columbia College, Chicago, IL (2007); the Frost Art Museum at Florida International University, Miami, FL (2004); and the Centre Culturel AfricAméricA, Port-au-Prince, Haiti (2001).

Leah Gordon is a photographer, filmmaker, curator, and writer. In the 1980s, she wrote lyrics, sang, and played for a feminist folk punk band. Gordon makes work on Modernism and architecture; the slave trade, the enclosures, industrialisation; and grassroots religious, class and folk histories. Her film and photographic work has been exhibited internationally, at venues that include the Museum of Contemporary Art, Sydney; the Dak’Art Biennale, Senegal; the National Portrait Gallery, UK; and the Norton Museum of Art, Florida. She is the co-director of the Ghetto Biennale in Port-au-Prince, Haiti; a curator for the Haitian Pavilion at the 54th Venice Biennale; a co-curator of Kafou: Haiti, History & Ar’ at Nottingham Contemporary, UK; and a co-curator of PÒTOPRENS: The Urban Artists of Port-au-Prince at Pioneer Works, NY and MOCA North Miami. In 2022, she will be exhibiting and curating at documenta fifteen in Kassel.

About the Moderator

Born in 1962 with the gift of clairvoyance, Jean-Daniel Lafontant was first initiated by members of his paternal grandfather in the city of Léogâne. Later, he was introduced to the tradition of his maternal ancestors as a Ounsi of Lakou Jisou. Lafontant became a Sèvitè and Houngan in 1997. A year later in December, he co-founded the sacred temple Na-Ri-VéH 777. In New York from the mid-1980s until 1996, he was intimately involved in the promotion of Haitian art influenced by Vodou. Since, he has produced, curated and consulted on many projects and events. From 2014 to date, Lafontant produced and helped shape more than half a dozen films related to Haiti and its culture. Lafontant is an alumni of the State University of Haiti, INAGHEI School of Management and Diplomacy as well as New York Institute of Technology. He spent two years as head of communications for the Haitian Ministry of Foreign Affairs; and later joined UTE, a decentralized unit of the Ministry of Finance of Haiti. Intermittently in 2010, a few months after Haiti’s devastating earthquake, Lafontant joined the humanitarian sector as a communication specialist. For the past six years, Lafontant has divided his time between New York, Miami, and Haiti, where he devotes all his energy to the culture of Haiti.