Conception, realization and original idea

All rights reserved © Marie-Denise Douyon and Radu Juster


2 Islands, 2 Stories,1 Neighborhood is a multimedia exhibition, that was part of the official program of Montreal’s 375th anniversary and was held at the Maison d’Haiti from October 7th to November 4th 201. This exhibition traces, in contemporary art, the history of two islands; Montreal and Haiti. The creators of this exhibition, Marie-Denise Douyon and Radu Juster explore in photographs, paintings, videos and interactive installations, key moments of these two stories, and their founding peoples the aboriginal in Quebec and the Taino in Haiti.  Their creations challenge our visions of identity both at the personal level and at the collective and societal level, the communities of Saint-Michel, a neighborhood with a high density of families of Haitian descent.

The exhibition is based around two components: the first, a historical and educative component that is accompanied with audio clips and explanatory texts prepared by the Centre International de Documentation et d’ Information Haïtienne, Caribéenne et Afro-canadienne (CIDIHCA) -(The International Center for Documentation and Information Haitian, Caribbean and African-Canadian; the second component is artistic and highlights the photographs, paintings and installations by Marie-Denise Douyon and Radu Juster.

The exhibition summarizes through a sensory and visual experience the unique path of the first black independent nation.  From the time of the Tainos, the Spanish conquest, the French colonisation, from slavery to the revolution of the Bois Caiman; from Toussaint Louverture to the proclamation of independence by Jean-Jacques Dessalines in 1804 ; to the American occupation (1915-1934) and the dictatorship of Duvalier (1957 -1986) and finally to the migratory flows and exile of the Haitians in Montreal.

The artists invite you to discover a story that links the destiny of two islands and two peoples, Haitians and Montrealers of Saint-Michel, told through contemporary art.

Project collaborators

2 Islands, 2 Stories, 1 Neighborhood is an event of the official programming of the 375th anniversary of Montreal. It is funded by the City of Montreal and the Government of Quebec.


Thanking all of our collaborators and La Maison d’Haïti


Historical texts and audio clips:

Franz Benjamin

Frantz Voltaire

Jean-François Leclerc

Omer St-Onge

Stéphane Martelly.

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