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--> Category: Valcin, Pierre Joseph 

Experts say he is one of the best naïve artists of all time.
Valcin, Pierre Joseph

Pierre Joseph-Valcin was born in 1926 in Port-au-Prince. Being the brother of Gerard Valcin, Pierre was encouraged to paint and to join the Centre d'Art. He was a mason, plumber, and technician before he changed professions.

In the early 1960's he came to the Foyer des arts plastiques with Gerald Valcin. In 1966 he joined the Centre d'Art .Gérard Valcin and Préfète Duffaut became his teachers, but he was able to develop his own style.

Pierre Joseph-Valcin's work consists mainly of scenes from country life; birds perched on blossom-covered trees, and voodoo scenes. Living in the miserable slums of the capital, the artist has created, perhaps as an escape, his own beautiful world of exotic plants and exquisitely colored imaginary birds. Outstanding also are his portraits of women with Modigliani-like faces and slightly distorted, fragile necks. His voodoo scenes and paintings of laos are particularly strong. Brought to life by the artist's belief in their existence, these spirits transmit a power and presence that demand respect and attention.

The artist's pictures are basically two-dimensional in feeling, even though overlapping and diminishing forms depicted as appearing in the distance add a sense of space. His arbitrary way of emphasizing the most important elements through size and color keeps his compositions on the surface. Characteristic for his palette is the juxtaposition of warm against cool, light pinks and blues against oranges and browns.

Pierre Joseph Valcin, as all other naïve artists, stayed very close to nature and Haitian customs. With a wild and poetic imagination, his colors are often soft and subtle, but sometimes very strong. Experts say he is one of the best naïve artists of all time.

Joseph-Valcin used to sign his work only Pierre Joseph.A few years ago he added Valcin to his last name, even though his style has nothing in common with that of his better-known brother. Many of his paintings can be ranked among the finest achievements of Haitian art.

His work has been shown all over the world, such as Washington DC, California, New-York, Berlin, Brusselles, Paris, Athens, and at the Villa Médicis in Rome.

1974 - Flagg Tanning Corp., Milwaukee Art Center, Wisconsin
1978 -1979 - Haitian Art - Brooklyn Museum, New York, Milwaukee Art Center, Wisconsin, Kunst aus Haiti, Berlin, Germany, New Orleans Museum of Art, Louisiana
1981 - Sotheby Parke Bennet Auction, New York, NY
1982 - International Art Expo, New York, NY
1982 - Allentown Art Museum, Allentown, Pennsylvania
1983 - Musee International d'Art Naif, Nice, France
1988 - Galeries Nationales du Grand Palais, Paris, France
1990 - Exposition du Palais du Rhin, Strasborg, France
1997 - Equitable Gallery, New York

Books and Catalogues
1974 - The Naive Tradition: Haiti, pp. 48-49
1978 - Haitian Art, pp. 106, 122
1978 - Kunst aus Haiti, pp. 159, 174
1981 - Sotheby's Haitian and Latin American Paintings, Drawings and Prints, (Cat. #24)
1982 - Art Expo: New York, p. 213
1982 - Three Generations of Haitian Art, (Cat. #100)
1983 - Peinture Haitienne, pp. 40-41
1986 - La Peinture Haitienne, p. 114
1986 - Voyage Au Pays Des Naifs, pp. 19, 150-152
1988 - HAITI Art Naif - Art Vaudou, 102-107
1990 - Dialogue du Reel et de l'Imaginaire, pp. 14-15
1997 - Equitable Gallery, New York

Permanent Collection
Milwaukee Art Center


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