Gregoire, Alexandre (1922–2001)


15. Marché
_
c1974 (24x16)


83. Mass
c1985 (24x36)

   Gregoire was a minor but not insignificant first generation naïf who contributed a small mural to the Episcopal Cathedral. His work was uneven: prosaic pieces like Marché are as common as more elaborate works like Mass. Gregoire's hues are somewhat subdued for a southern artist; and he was especially drawn to the color orange.
  For 30 years he was a saxophonist, first in the Haitian Army Band and later in the National Palace Band, In 1968 he began painting largely at the urging of childhood friends Prêféte Duffaut and Pierre–Joseph Valcin.
  Gregoire and a broker once joined me at breakfast on the Olofsson Hotel veranda. The artist was wearing a Red Sox cap. He was ever after a particular favorite. (Sadly, he did not live to see the Sox destroy the Yankees in 2004.)

     Hector, Jean–Voltaire (   –   )


183. 'Moi et mon amour'
_
1999 (12x16)

187. 'You dance avan you leve kanzo'
c1999 (24x30)

   Hector is a talented naïf who began painting in 1977. He is featured in many articles and most books published on Haitian art since the early 1980s.
   My brief Creole dictionary does not allow me to translate the titles of the two paintings below. 'You' means 'the,' however, so one is 'The dance before/around…' and the other is 'The rara….'
   Of special interest in 'You dance' is the combination of vodou (the dancers and the poto-mitan (or poteau-mitan) and Catholicism (the paintings on the peristyle wall). Haïti is, as an oft–quoted observation has it, '80 percent Catholic and 100 percent vodou.'

 

 

 

 

 


                                188. 'You rara ki alé chaca té nan boa'
                                                  c1999 (30x40)

 

 

 

 

Henry, Calixte (1933–   )


164. Portrait of a Woman_
c1998 (30x18)

   Calixte Henry joined the Centre d'Art in 1955. He is among the finest of Haïti's sophisticates and has trained many and inspired even more artists. (See, for example, Hilomé Jose.)
   Henry applies his colors mostly with palette knives, achieving an especially rich texture. He's known especially, but not exclusively, for his fine portraits of women.

 

 

 

 

     Hilaire, Jean–Cedieu (1954–   )


65. Seaside Market
c1981 (12x16)

Nothing known: just liked it.
  
In the late 1980s I saw place-mats at the Kinam Hotel (in Petionville) made from an Hilaire painting. The only other Hilaire work I've seen appeared in a 2014 eBay auction (without biographical information). I'd like to see more. Hilaire's vivid colors, together with his dense textures and careful balance, reveal a talented artist.

           

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