MIAMI — An exhibit that hails a Haitian architecture style popularized in the wake of colonialism seeks to educate visitors at the Little Haiti Cultural Complex Gallery.
Maison Gingerbread: Haiti’s Living Architecture, designed and curated by Gustavo A. Garcia and Claudia Garcia, will be on display through June 30 at the Little Haiti Cultural Complex, 212-260 NE 59th Terr. in Miami.
The exhibit features the work of Anghelen A. Phillips, Aric Mei, and Jenna Mcknight. It celebrates Haitian Gingerbread architectural style, characterized by unique and distinctive ornaments, color and details, featured for the first time in Miami, Florida as a comprehensive historical architecture exhibition.
The Gingerbread homes of Haiti represent an important aspect of the post-colonial landscape, which were quintessential to the development of this unique style of Haitian architectural heritage. Hand-drawn illustrations by artist Anghelen A. Phillips from her 1975 book titled Gingerbread Houses, Haiti’s Endangered Species, and a series of photographic images depict the current condition of select Haitian Gingerbread homes, courtesy of The World Monuments Fund
A special feature within the exhibition highlights the home of world-renowned Haitian dance legend Vivian Gauthier, featuring architectural plans, elevations, and sections, with photographs by Aric Mei. The elements of this typography of architecture are beautiful displayed within a vignette that includes actual architectural elements that physically illustrate the complex fretwork, ornate balustrades and intricate woodwork that signify the style of “gingerbread” architecture.
Selections from original windows, doors and building facades are exhibited alongside historical images, providing concrete context to this exhibition of architecture as a cultural, living art form.
Panel discussions scheduled throughout the month of June will address issues of historic preservation in the context of the reconstruction efforts since 2010. Beyond heritage preservation, the exhibit and panel discussions will address the gingerbread style as the exception to the design, and construction methodologies of the past five decades of building in Haiti.