Kochon Sa a Lou / This Pig is Heavy and more art by Didier William

Kochon Sa a Lou / This Pig is Heavy, 2017
60 x 48 inch (h x w)
wood stain on panel

Haiti, b. 1983

“The title of this piece… appears in Haitian Kreyòl,” with an English translation. Inspired by memories of growing up in a resilient yet vulnerable Haitian community in Miami and coming of age when black and brown immigrant bodies have come to symbolize precarious living, William created these mixed-media pieces as pictorial rather than narrative. As with most of his works, the body takes center stage, literally and figuratively." - Jerry Philogene, Ph.D., Associate Professor in the American Studies Department at Dickinson College, Pennsylvania.

Didier William’s paintings yield image and form to the physical and psychic spaces occupied by diaspora communities. His work has always been preoccupied with imagining unconventional bodies and specifically materializing black and queer identity formation. William finds no value in demarcating between printmaking, painting, collage, and drawing as they combine, collide, and accumulate to become the surfaces of the objects. He draws on historical content, Haitian Vodou symbolism, and personal narrative to inform his research and his material choices. In this way, William builds something adjacent to what Audre Lorde calls a ‘biomythography.’ The word ‘camouflage’ functions as somewhat of an umbrella term for him. It refers to an alternative presence that both denies and reaffirms the physical body. In this way, the body is omnipresent. The acts of figurative distortion, collage/patterning, and ornamentation synchronize to form a permeable membrane between the body and its failed container. William is just as interested in the persistent failure of this container as he is in the autonomy of the body itself. Camouflage implies no direct adversary but immediately indicates deep tensions with one’s environment, so much so that a renegotiation of terms is necessary. His surfaces – where the body is formed through cuts, stains, and the residue of historical narratives – become sites of convergence and collision, marking the simultaneous fragility and persistence of black humanity.

Union College Permanent Collection, 2018.1.1 UCPC, © Didier William

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other works by Didier William

Broken Skies Inferno
48 x 60 inch (h x w)

Marassa Jumeaux
48 x 60 inch (h x w)

I see you, we all see you, 2017
13 x 8.1 inch (h x w)
photo polymer print

M'ap Kanpe sou zepol ou, 2020
218 x 107 x 3 cm (h x w x d)

Twaze, 2018
14 x 16 inch (h x w)
Copper etching on paper

more from The McIninch Art Gallery

Upper West Side , 2012
24 x 36 inch (h x w)
Acrylic on canvas

War Sketches, La Tretoire on t..., 1914
18 x 24 inch (h x w)

Untitled Landscape, 1977
18.5 x 25.5 inch (h x w)

Stormy Old Man, White Mountain..., 2000
10 x 8 inch (h x w)
Epson Digital Print

Summerscapes, N.d.
14 x 21 inch (h x w)
Oil on canvas


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