Haiti’s new school of modern art is being exhibited in venues around the US and Latin America in a traveling show that landed in New Paltz last month. Currently hanging in the Cafeteria coffeehouse on Main Street are works by five well-known Haitian artists who represent FAPADEC, the National Haitian Artists’/Painters’ Association. Featured artists include Thebaud David, Myke Joseph Surpris, Osse Hermantin, Sonel Guerrier, Addmaster Exilas, Dorvil and Faustin, all of whom are teacher/volunteers at the art school Espwa Lavi Pou Timoun (ELT), Hope for Children’s Lives, located in a suburb of Port-au-Prince. Working collaboratively, they have put their murals on Haiti’s most famous nightspots, including the Olfson Hotel.
The art show is curated by local musician/music therapist/photographer Peter Crotty to benefit the Haitian People’s Support Project (HPSP), a not-for-profit organization dedicated to helping the people of Haiti through existing grassroots, community-based projects there. Founded in Woodstock in 1990 by Pierre and Terry Leroy, HPSP backs sustainable living, nutritional and educational programs in farming communities, orphanages, schools and temporary shelters throughout Haiti. A massive reforestation project in Bois Neuf will help reforest Haiti and combat malnutrition. And of course, continuing efforts to assist survivors of the January 12, 2022 earthquake in and around Port-au-Prince are of primary importance.
Crotty and his partner Halle Kananack organized a tent collection at Mountain Jam last year to donate to HPSP for earthquake victims, and when they delivered the tents to the Leroys, they were impressed with the art hanging in the couple’s Woodstock home. With his experience organizing Fourth Saturdays in New Paltz and curating art shows for Jim Szetz during the Cafeteria’s past incarnation as the Muddy Cup, Crotty made arrangements there for this exhibit of works by the Haitian artists. All proceeds from sales are going to HPSP, making hot lunches and drinking water and other support services available to the impoverished students at ELT. Crotty and Kananack extend a heartfelt shout-out to Szetz for his generosity in hosting the show, and hope that the community comes in to appreciate the artwork and learn more about HPSP.
For more information about HPSP, visit www.haitiansupportproject.org or contact co-founder and director Terry Leroy at (845) 679-7320. For pricing information and other inquiries, please speak with Peter Crotty at (914) 213-0046 or [email protected]