MARTINE FOURCAND, Canadian-Swiss and Haitian, is a multidisciplinary artist who lives in Montreal.
Painter, poet, and theatrical designer, she grew up in Haiti before leaving the island of her birth for Canada in 1979. First, at the University of Ottawa, and later at the University of Quebec in Montreal, she studied sociology, communication, the semiology of cultural productions, and became interested in German theatrical traditions. From early on, she was engaged in the feminist movement and in the defense of human rights. Over the years, she has worked with international institutions on social and development projects.
In 1982, Fourcand’s paintings were shown for the first time in Montreal (La Cuisse de Velours; and later at Galerie Maximum, Centre Culturel Hector Hyppolite and others). She has had exhibits in Haiti (Galerie Jean-René Jérôme, Musée Saint Pierre, Ateliers Zaka), China, and Spain (Casa de America de Madrid). Over the years, she has also designed and created posters for numerous events. Recently, she presented two solo exhibitions in Montreal at Atelier Ilinca Ghibu (2015) and Galerie Erga (2016). She also participed in a group exhibition at Georges Laoun’s, as part of the Black History Month in February 2016. She made the cover illustration of Kerline Devise’s poetry book Nudité et Fragments, published in Les Écrits des Forges in 2016, and several paintings related to that poetry book entitled Secrets de laves.
In 1987, she co-led the street theater performances of Action Femmes Quebec Haiti. In 1988, she collaborated with the collective that created The Rice Revolt, a theatrical performance presented at the Bread and Puppet Theater festival (Vermont, USA).The same year, she participated in the production of Soleils Noyés staged by the Théâtre Femmes des Amériques (Montréal). In 1997, she designed the staging of Ci-gît Je, premier amour, a theatrical adaptation of Samuel Beckett’s short story First Love directed by Sylvie Joco and performed by Marcel Casséus (aka “Lobo”). The play was shown at the French Institute of Haiti in November, 1997.
Her poems have appeared in a variety of publications, the most recent being in an anthology dedicated to Haitian women poets, Terre de femmes, 150 ans de poésie féminine haïtienne (Paris: Bruno Doucey, 2010), and in a special edition of the French review Carnavalesques, “Voices of Women of the Americas”, (Editions Aspect, 2013). At times, writing and painting merge together, and the poem is written on the body of the canvas.