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Paintings: Frantz Ewald

Artist Biography

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Frantz Ewald is well known to Vues d'Afrique. Ten years ago, he earned the award for the best documentary for Creole television with his video entitled L'art Haïtien: Jean René Jérome, presented at the African and Creole Cinema Festival April 7-12, 1987, sponsored by Vues d'Afrique.

Ewald trained as a graphic artist in Switzerland. He has produced more than 60 videos on Haitian Art and provincial areas in Haiti. From 1967 to 1974, Ewald worked as a member of the graphics division in Radio Canada. Over the years, he has been particularly active in the field of public education.

Immediately upon returning to his home country of Haiti, Ewald widely introduced contemporary graphics as a medium. He created a graphics division on National Television where he developed and produced educational programs. Since that time, he has continually increased his involvement in public education through graphics and posters promoting social awareness.

Frantz Ewald has dedicated much of his time to organizations such as UNICEF, particularly during national awareness campaigns, to improve the survival and development of the child. The phrase of one of his posters read Konesans fanmi se lespwa ti moun, which translates to "Family education is the hope of children."

His work has helped to increase public awareness and information through education campaigns in preparation for the November 1987 elections. In 1990, he conceived and realized jointly with the United Nations Office at Port-au-Prince a media plan for the promotion of human rights and the civic education campaign for the elections.

On behalf of the Health Ministry, he produced visual materials for a vaccination campaign and video spots for the promotion of breast feeding. With the private sector, he realized posters for the national program in the fight against HIV.

Since 1993, Ewald has devoted himself to painting Violence, which was the theme of his first exhibit at the Centre d'Art held that same year. To Ewld, painting "violence" was to show its uselessness. His latest exhibition entitled Pa Janm Bliye - Pour Mémoire, Frantz reflected the same concerns found in his earlier works on social issues. His main objective was not to please at all costs, but rather to communicate:

Denounce violence so as not to forget it; To not forget violence, so as not to reproduce it; Retain in memory the injustice of justice; Retain the brutality of the Macoutes and other undignified militaries; That injustice and repression cease for us to be a model to pass on to our children.

Beyond his paintings, Ewald offers us his vision of a world without violence. Raymond Vezina, professor and former director of the graphic design module of L'UQAM, wrote in a letter to Ewald: "To paint violence is to condenm it and therefore contribute to its reduction."

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