Haitian Gingerbread House

MAY 7 THRU JUNE 30 — Little Haiti Cultural Complex

Maison Gingerbread: Haiti’s Living Architecture celebrates Haitian Gingerbread architectural style, characterized by unique and distinctive ornaments, color and details, featured for the first time in Miami as a comprehensive historical architecture exhibition. The Gingerbread homes of Haiti represent an important aspect of the post-colonial landscape, and 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 entitled, Gingerbread Houses, Haiti’s Endangered Species, 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 from Gingerbread homes which physically illustrate the complex fret work, 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.

Vivian Gauthier's Gingerbread House (bedroom)
Photo credit: William Daniels

Maison Gingerbread: Haiti’s Living Architecture features the work of Anghelen A. Phillips, Aric Mei, Jenna Mcknight. Panel discussion 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 aim to address the Gingerbread style as the exception to the design, and construction methodologies of the past five decades of building in Haiti.

Opening reception will take place Thursday, May 7, 2015 from 6-9pm. The exhibition will be displayed through June 30, 2015 at the Little Haiti Cultural Complex.

Related articles