Stanley Greene | Haiti
curated by Enrico Stefanelli
in collaboration with Noor Agency and Polka Galerie
“Voodoo is an African-American religion characterised by syncretic and highly esoteric features. The word comes from the African vodu which literally means “spirit”, “divinity”, or more literally “a sign from beyond.” Current Voodoo religion combines, in fact, ancestral elements of traditional African animism, practiced in Benin before colonialism, and concepts drawn from Catholicism. Today Voodoo is practiced by about sixty million people worldwide and has recently been recognized as an official religion in Benin, where its flourishing Church gathers 80% of the population, and in Haiti where it is practiced by the majority of the population, together with the Catholic religion. Unlike popular opinion, Voodoo is not a cult linked to black magic, but a religion in all respects and has a solid structure of moral and social doctrines, as well as a complex theology. There is no doubt that Catholicism has strongly objected to some aspects of Voodoo which had strong connections with traditional Satanism: animal sacrifices, the ritual importance of the blood of animals that Christians consider evil (especially snakes), possessions and black magic.” (Cit. Wikipedia)
Stanley Greene, during his stay in Haiti, could not thus forget this fundamental aspect of the lives of the people in Haiti. A vision of religious and spiritual practices of the Haitian population which, although not examined in depth, is undoubtedly significant towards the comprehension of the many facets of this religion and how people practice it everyday in that strip of land. Photos with a strong, sometimes even emotional impact which demonstrate the famous reporter’s ability to tell stories.
(from a text by Enrico Stefanelli)