Marie-Denise Douyon talks about her journey from creating for fun, to sharing her culture and life experiences through art.
Host: Tomeka M. Winborne
Description: Marie-Denise Douyon talks about her journey from creating for fun, to sharing her culture and life experiences through art.
Runtime: 33:39 minutes
The art of Marie-Denise Douyon reflects a cross-cultural identity informed by the confluence of three societies: her native Haiti, her childhood land, Morocco, and her adopted home, Quebec. Douyon transports us to mythical and sacred places interwoven with warriors, lovers and deities. With the invisible and the visible, she tells a story inspired by the Africa of her childhood, suffused with tenderness, depth, poetry and fantasy.
As a Montreal citizen in a Quebec increasingly concerned about climate change, Douyon focuses her artistic approach on themes related to global warming, ecological disasters and their social and environmental impacts. A dedicated recycler, she creates unique works from discarded material and found objects.
Marie-Denise Douyon has exhibited in Canada, the United-States, Europe and Africa. In Montreal, her artworks has been shown at the Musée du Bardo in Tunisduring a Canadian Tunisian group exhibit.
The exhibition: The Art to Recreate
The trigger of Douyon’s artistic vision, is a painful incident she lived in her late twenties: through an arbitrary arrest in Haiti. Experiencing incarceration and violence and inhuman conditions, she discovers that her artistic creation is her outlet. This rich exhibition will trace the migratory journey of the artistfrom Port-au-Prince to Casablanca, through Benin, New York, Montreal and ends with her latest trip to Japan. Impressed by the Quebec’s values of citizenship and human rights, she wishes to give back to this society that has taught her so much. In the logical follow-up of her career, this project seems obvious. The need of reinventing one’s self is a passage that many people experience. With this exhibition, “I want to inspire people to connect with their deep selves and take the path to self-reconstruction" says Douyon.
Discover Douyon’s art, a creative journey that tells of a unique life course while supporting a mobilizing and inspiring initiative.
In conversation, NPR’s Ailsa Chang sat down with Angie Thomas, the acclaimed author of The Hate U Give, and the movie’s director George Tillman Jr., to discuss how the book and film connected with their own personal experiences.
The Hate U Give tells the story of a teenage girl, Starr Carter (Amandla Stenberg), who is a part of two worlds: the poor, predominantly black neighborhood where she resides, and the white, affluent prep school that she attends. Her worlds are turned upside down when she witnesses the fatal police shooting of her childhood friend, an unarmed black male teenager. Following the tragic shooting, Starr is drawn towards a life of activism to stand up for her friend, who is called a “thug” and other misinformed names by the media, and to protest the wrongful actions of police brutality.
George Tillman Jr., the director of the film, spoke with Chang about what it was like to base certain scenes from the movie on actual talks he received growing up. He discussed how emotional it was to bring these scenes to life, particularly because he now has a teenage son himself. “This deals with history,” he said. “This deals with survival and how we can continue to stay on this earth without police brutality or being shot or being killed. You know, this is part of the fear of the African-American community.”
Another significant theme in the book is how Starr navigates between her two worlds, and how she feels an internal pressure to erase her blackness while at her fancy prep school with her white classmates. Certainly, many of us can relate to this uneasy pressure growing up or currently in the workplace, and this double life is actually based on author Angie Thomas’s life experiences.
Growing up, Thomas also lived in a mostly black neighborhood while attending a predominantly white, private college in Mississippi. She described her own experiences as a struggle, and practiced the art of code switching. “I would make myself more presentable I thought. I was careful of how I spoke. I was careful of how much emotion I showed,” Thomas said. “And it was a struggle because so often I was silent on things that mattered to me. And I would experience microaggressions from my classmates, and I was silent about them. I never called out the racism.”. READ MORE........