Standing With Papa Legba: Vodou at the Crossroads Opening Reception
Standing with Papa Legba: Vodou at the Crossroads
In Haitian Vodou, Papa Legba is the judicial power charged with opening and closing doors between physical and spiritual realms, and the daily circumstances that create static or kinetic situations in our owns lives. It is he who decides who have permission to speak to the loa (deities). It is he who serve as the voice of God. Papa Legba is the first to open and close all ceremonies. The trickster, Papa Legba is gatekeeper of the crossroads. It is here, at the crossroads almost one year after of an earthquake ravaged Haiti that we find the work of contemporary houngans and mambos, of the laborers of roots, magic and the Sacred found in Vodou. Standing with Papa Legba addresses a critical point in Haitian spiritual and sacred art history during which artists are asked to explore the dynamics of ancient African powers in serving as a catalyst for the Haitian Revolution and the post-earthquake desecration of these sacred traditions by evangelical zealots acting out of misinformation, institutionalized racism and fear. Standing with Papa Legba, gives artists an opportunity to explore the power and future of Haitan Vodou, particularly investigating how the spiritual system was at the forefront of Haiti’s socio-political founding. Furthermore, in lieu of increasingly devastating natural disasters, it will be important to contemplate how utilizing an earth-based spiritual practice may slow down and even reverse some of the environmental issues threatening the existence of humanity and the entire planet.