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Expressions Art Gallery
Etienne Chavannes was born on July 15, 1939 in Cap Hatien. Fortunately Etienne's father was a businessman and could afford to send Etienne to college. After studying for 3 years he went to work for the Department of Malaria Control in Port-au-Prince. At the age of 30 he went to Cap Haitien to study with Philome Obinches Within six months he realized that he was inspired by different forces than Obin, and left to develop his own style. A recognized painter, Nehemy Jean, encouraged him and gave him some advice. Chavannes went back to Cap Haitien to refine his style. He paints in a descriptive brightly colored manner and usually prefers to depict crowds rather than individuals. His interest in people is quite evident in the contemporary scenes of his native town that he chooses as the subject of his work. His style is one that reflects activity, motion and a sense of humor. He is well known for his scenes of everyday life, people and events. Chavannes stayed at the Center of Art of Port-au-Prince for six years. In 1987 he had an exhibit at the Brooklyn Museum of Art. During the 1980's his reputation became international with Exhibits in Detroit, Paris, Belgium, Germany and the United States. He is very independent, refusing the exclusiveness of a single gallery, and refusing to paint requests. He lives in a village close to Port-au-Prince with his wife and six children. "... I know painters of my age who are related to a gallery. They are now rich, and they sell expensive. Me, I am poor, but known in the whole, and especially free world. I like that."