71. Ville imaginaire_
100. Orange Sky
112. Ville imaginaire
c1989 (poster: 19x12)
160. 'Vue du pont'
Pauleus Vital and a first generation artist who
joined the Centre d'Art in 1948, and who painted two of the murals in the
Episcopal Cathedral, Duffaut has produced a few masterpieces, mostly of vodou
artist is best known,
however, for works said to be fantastic visions of his hometown, Jacmel.
and no. As a fine and sophisticated Haitian artist once explained:
at Haïti, parched and poor. Duffaut
sees it as he wishes it was:
lush and happy.
Much or most
of Duffaut's work is repetitive. Even so, he is among the best–known Haitian
painters. Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis's estate included a Duffaut; and
the artist is represented in many museum and private collections.
should probably have bought one large Duffaut in 1972 and have been done with it.
Instead, by 1989 I had four (and a poster) — and I'd donated two others to
non–profit group auctions.
. . . in 1985 the great
J–E Gourgue packed his own Reposair and three
other paintings into a
wooden box he'd built for me to check as 'excess baggage' on my flights
back to San Francisco. He winced when he saw Orange Sky. I realized he'd expected better of
'You don't like
Duffaut?,' I asked.
Ever the gentleman, Gourgue smiled slightly,
tilted his head,
but made no comment.
considered Orange Sky quite fanciful until, driving down the
California coast one sunset, I saw a sky above the Pacific Ocean that
was exactly 'Duffaut orange.')
after the artist died, a Canadian working for an American Bar Assn
program in Port-au-Prince offered 'Trois
Femme d'Egype' [sic] for a bargain price. It arrived by Federal
Express just two days after I wired him payment. I finally had my 'one large Duffaut.'
is at once familiar and unusual. There are the usual multi-colored
buildings and myriads of tiny people, swirling roads and risers, deep 'Duffaut blue' sea, and
vodou lwas and symbols. But, as the title indicates, the setting
is some fantastic vision of Egypt -- or of the Suez Canal.
is the only painting for which I have a certificate of authenticity (see
right and the enlargement). Duffaut had many imitators and was also the victim of forgers, causing
him to issue such documents.
With the death of
Wilson Bigaud in March 2010, Duffaut was the
last surviving member of the 'first generation' of Haitian artists. He
died in October 2012.
121. Ville imaginaire
250. 'Trois Femme d'Egype'