Haitian President Series exhibited at Documenta Fifteen with Atis Rezistans | Ghetto Biennale
Atis Rezistans (Resistance Artists) is a dynamic, majority class group of artists working in the Grand Rue neighbourhood of downtown Port- au-Prince, Haiti, often in harsh and difficult conditions. This is a shifting community which is made up of experienced, mature artists, who are primarily sculptors and a range of younger emerging artists, some of whom are working in sculpture and painting, but also, more recently, photography, video, music, slam poetry, writing and performance. Much of their work relates to Haitian history and religion which is deep-rooted in their culture. Atis Rezistans | Ghetto Biennale are honoured that the Catholic Church agreed to allow this exhibition in this space as there are so many spiritual parallels between the work and the space.
In December 2009, Atis Rezistans hosted the 1st Ghetto Biennale, which was devised as a response to lack of international mobility for majority class artists which acts as a barrier between them and the global art world. The Ghetto Biennale issues an international call for artists to apply to come to their neighbourhood to make work with and the Haitian artists. Over the last twelve years Atis Rezistans have hosted over three hundred international artists and formed many strong collaborative bonds. The Ghetto Biennale is attempting to momentarily transform spaces, dialogues and relationships considered unthinkable and unworkable, into complex, transcultural, creative platforms.
Atis Rezistans | Ghetto Biennale, in documenta fifteen, wants to showcase Haitian art, and the collaborations generated by the Ghetto Biennale. We will stage performances, films and a series of discussions and debates which will inform and debate the agency, importance, influence and impact of the Haitian Revolution; discuss the radical lessons that Haitian majority class rural and urban cultures can teach people in the 21st century; and formulate an interrogation of cultural institutions, the margins and the centres of global art production.