FOSAJ presents Kids with Cameras - Haiti
Feb. 2006 — Project director Gigi Cohen
I have the pleasure of inviting you to view intensely powerful and beautiful images of Haiti as seen through the eyes of child domestic workers.
In early 2005, under the aegis of Kids with Cameras, I held a photographic workshop for twelve children from the Foyer Maurice Sixto, a school for child domestic workers in Carrefour, located in the outskirts of Port-au-Prince, Haiti's capital. The outcome from that workshop will be presented in an exhibit focusing on the children's photographs.
This exhibit, entitled Haiti Unmasked, will open in Jacmel and is the first I have curated. The work examines child identity and reflects upon the myriad roles that children are called upon to play in society. These twelve children between the ages of 10 and 14 look out at their world. Through photography they restructure what they see through the prism of their personal vision: daily life, relationships, social realities and the yearly cultural phenomenon, Carnival in Jacmel. The exhibiting artists are: Viergetane, Lineda, Jérôme, Jésula Fabiola, Satéla, Ginette, Kéttelène, Ketna, Micheline, Daphnée and Josimène.
As Christopher Myers notes, "These children become expert mask-wearers. Masking is part of that invisibility inherent to their position. They wear the faces that are expected of them and often required of them; no one really sees the child underneath the masks. A mask is a place of interaction and engagement--it is the center of a dialogue. It is the heart of collaboration between an audience and a performer, between the one who is seeing and the one who decides what is seen. When Josimène took some photos after meeting Gigi Cohen, she took photos of people wearing masks. In an environment of invisibility, interactions between mask-wearers become increasingly complex. However, by engaging the dialogue of the mask directly, Gigi and Josimène weave a narrative that provides some measure of the concrete."
The reception for the artists will be held at FOSAJ on Saturday, February 25, at 6:00 p.m. located at 5-7 Rue St Anne in Jacmel, Haiti. Tel. 509 288 2071. (http://www.fosaj.ht)
The children, representatives from the Foyer Maurice Sixto and I will attend the opening.
Kids with Cameras is a non-profit organization that teaches the art of photography to marginalized children in communities around the world.
Foyer Maurice Sixto gives educational, psychological and emotional support for the children in domesticity in order to help them to become autonomous and responsible adults.
FOSAJ (Fondation Sant D'A Jakmel) is a non-profit institution created in May 2003, in Jacmel, Haiti. Its mission is to empower the Haitian people through art and cultural initiatives. Their website is at http://www.fosaj.ht.
I would also like to acknowledge Child Labor and the Global Village: Photography for Social Change, a project of Julia Dean and Associates.
Funded by Kids with Cameras and The Fledgling Fund.
For further information about this project, please contact me: