Bwa Kayiman-a ceremony celebrating the beginnings of the Haitian Revolution 14th August 1791
This series of photographs is my attempt to show how the people of Brooklyn celebrate the eve of the Haitian Revolution, 14th August 1791. It was a night of political discourse followed by a ceremony entreating God to look over and protect them in their efforts to win their freedom from bondage. Bwa Kayiman is creole for the Caiman Forest, which is where this meeting occurred in the northern province of the country. The ceremony was lead by Dutty Boukman, a vodou priest. This Brooklyn occurrence it is a time of love and remembrance (no animals are hurt). The main man in these photos is taking the part of Boukman. As in these types of events, the participants are open to visitation/possession. In respect for this, the clarity of these photos was abandoned and this attempt to show a calm, dreamy event was adopted with long handheld exposures suggesting the movement of energies beyond this reality-but it IS real...
Independence was finally achieved from Napoleon's France on 1st Jan 1804 making Haiti the 2nd republic in the New World, and the most successful slave revolt ever (however in 1825 Haiti was forced to repay France $21 billion to preserve its freedom, this was settled in 1947) . This was just a few years after the French Revolution which began in 1789 and its Declaration of the Rights of Man.
This project is dedicated to my dad-with The Ancestors now