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DeWitt Peters

Dewitt Peters and the Centre D'Art Haitien

Here is Dewitt Peters in 1944 in the Centre d'Art Haitien

It was during the World War II when DeWitt Clinton Peters arrived in Haiti as a high school English teacher. He chose teaching to substitute service in the military. Peters had a natural passion for art and especially painting but was surprised to find that there were no art galleries in Haiti. Peters picked a dream to preach art in Haiti. He committed himself to convince Haitians that art was a noble profession. He told the people of Haiti that they could make a better living through embracing art.

Because of his influence DeWitt Clinton Peters remains a renowned figure in the Haitian art industry. During his early days in Haiti he developed a dream to establish an institution which would train and encourage talented citizens. He was out to convince citizens that art was more paying than other common careers like sweeping yards or driving taxis.

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Primitive art of Haiti with an international reputation

Haitian art has grown to attain world recognition. This is an extra-ordinary fame for the so called the poorest of all the western countries.

Haitian art is termed as the best form of primitive art in the world. The industry gained ground in 1940 when an American teacher began to appreciate the uniqueness of Haitian art. Dewitt Peters was impressed by the talents that he discovered in many uneducated Haitians.

The people of Haiti create unique artistic materials which are based on raw colors. Dewitt established the Centre D'Art Haitian in 1943 an artistic centre to support and expose Haitian dedicated artists.

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The Holy Trinity Cathedral Murals and its history with Haitian Painters

This is one of the best achievements of the Centre D'Art. Under the direction of DeWitt Peters and Selden Rodman, artists such as Philome Obin, Castera Bazile, Rigaud Benoit, Gabriel Leveque, Wilson Bigaud, Jasmin Joseph and Prefete Dufaud were all involved in this project to paint the Holy Trinity Cathedral Murals.

Located in downtown Port-au-Prince in Haiti, the Holy Trinity Cathedral was known for its interior murals painted by some of the most famous Haitian artists. The paintings inside the Cathedral depicted biblical stories only with black or African actors

Unfortunately, the Holy Trinity Cathedral was heavily damaged in the 2010 Haiti earthquake. Holy Trinity Cathedral is located in Port-au-Prince, at the corner of Rue Pavee and Avenue Mgr. Guilloux

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