Louis Henderson: Overtures

Sarah Perks (Curator)

Research output: Non-textual formExhibition

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Louis Henderson: Overtures was a major solo exhibition for which Professor Sarah Perks was sole curator presented at HOME Manchester Sat 21 Apr 2018 – Sun 10 Jun 2018. The exhibition included a series of new co-commissions from award-winning artist Louis Henderson produced around a collaboration in the Haitian city of Port-au-Prince. This exhibition was part of ¡Viva! Spanish & Latin American Festival 2018. Somewhat obscured and ignored throughout history, considered minor to the revolutions of the USA and France, the Haitian Revolution was perhaps the only revolution of the 18th and 19th centuries to truly live up to the Enlightenment ideals of freedom and equality. The Revolution was initially led by a former slave who became an army general: François-Dominique Toussaint Louverture, arrested by Napoleon Bonaparte’s army in 1802 and brought to France, imprisoned in a medieval castle in the Jura Mountains where he died from pneumonia and malnutrition in April 1803. The exhibition was conceived as an expansion of the research for a feature film, staged through four rooms that include archival displays, a sound installation and four films. Overtures takes the viewer on a journey from the National Archives in Paris, to the frozen stratigraphic landscapes of the French Jura and into the heart of a baroque-like limestone cave, through rivers and waterfalls into the sea that connects these two worlds, eventually arriving in Haiti, where we come across a group of young actors rehearsing scenes from a Creole translation of the play Monsieur Toussaint by Édouard Glissant. This co-commission was in partnership with Spectre Productions (France), Centre national des arts plastiques (France) and Ghetto Biennial 2017 (Haiti). The feature film Ouvertures was shown as a work in progress at BFI London Film Festival 2019 and world-premiered at Berlin International Film Festival in February 2020.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 21 Apr 2018


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