The Museum of Contemporary Art (MOCA) of North Miami will open its fall season with the presentation of Edouard Duval-Carrié: Metamorphosis. The solo exhibition by Duval-Carrié, renowned Haitian-born American artist and Miami resident, will be on display Sept. 7–Nov. 5. This exhibition not only revises the artist’s work, but also introduces approximately 37 new creations, as well as a recreation of his studio in one of the gallery rooms.
Curated by Anthony Bogues, Ph.D. and professor of Africana Studies at Brown University, Metamorphosis centers on the symbolic and cultural histories of Haiti and the Caribbean, interpreting colonial encounters and their consequences. Central to the changes in this time period were slave rebellions and the Haitian Revolution. Duval-Carrié’s artistic themes are many variations on the historic life of the region, blending his distinct aesthetic with the everyday, creating pieces that represent the Caribbean Diaspora experienced up through the present day.
“What I wanted to do is first a revision of my work and then to translate it into something novel,” Duval-Carrié said.
Works in the exhibition reflect how the region’s flora and fauna were essential to the colonial experience, as seen in the work Red vs. Blue Skirmish. Other works include vignettes of a slave who transforms himself into various forms of animal life; boats transformed into containers of sugar; and disfigured human forms, heads and faces metamorphosing from their symmetrical shapes into things unknown.
The Memory Series, mixed media pieces done in resin, Red vs. Blue Skirmish, mixed media on aluminum, 48 inches diameter, reveals the artist as an extraordinary colorist, transforming some of his former artistic themes into a new artistic vision. The exhibition thus creates contemporary echoes of the historical colonial encounter and the construction of the New World, and considers its meanings for today.
“We are delighted to present the work of renowned artist Edouard Duval-Carrié at MOCA,” said Natasha Colebrook-Williams, MOCA’s interim director. “With Duval-Carrie’s extraordinary following, it is a pleasure to exhibit Metamorphosis, an exhibition with new works that have not been shown before. MOCA is proud of its international outlook and the unique exhibitions we share with our audience.”
Within this lens, Duval-Carrié’s work stands out. The themes in his work are symbolic of the life and history of Haiti. His work depicts the beauty of everyday life in the small island nation, showcasing the impact of colonialism to religion on the culture on the country.
“The Caribbean was a theatre for historical colonial encounter. This encounter produced new peoples, new religions, new cultures and new economies—a New World. It was a moment of relentless change, altered meanings and adaptations,” MOCA said in a statement. “Central to these adaptations was the production of sugar on plantations which also became scenes of slave rebellions and the Haitian Revolution. Plantations become sites of death and life while creating new taste and desires in the Americas and Europe. How to grapple with the creation, constant unfolding, and afterlives of the colonial encounter, and what these produced within the everyday, has been a preoccupation of many Caribbean artists.”
Admission to MOCA is $5, but free for MOCA members and North Miami residents. An artist reception will take place from 7–9 p.m. on Thursday, Sept. 14 with an admission cost of $10 for the general public and free to MOCA members and North Miami residents.