Little Rock, Ark. (Jan. 12, 2011) -- The William J. Clinton Presidential Center's temporary exhibit, "Haiti: Building Back Better" celebrates the people and culture of Haiti as the nation recovers from the devastating earthquake one year ago today. Open until Feb. 6, 2011, the exhibit highlights the history of Haiti, Haitian arts and culture, President Clinton's presidential and post-presidential involvement with the country, and earthquake recovery efforts.
"Today, we mark the one-year anniversary of the devastating earthquake, we planned this exhibit not only to address the tragedy and the rebuilding efforts, but also to highlight the rich history and culture of this remarkable country and it's resilient people," said Stephanie S. Streett, Executive Director of the Clinton Foundation.
President Clinton first traveled to Haiti in 1975. As president, he worked to encourage economic development and restore democratically elected leadership in Haiti. After leaving The White House, he continued to travel to Haiti as a private citizen and responded to the needs of Haitians through the work of the William J. Clinton Foundation, the Clinton Global Initiative, and the Clinton Health Access Initiative, and recently, as the UN Special Envoy for Haiti. After the January 2010 earthquake, he was invited by the government of Haiti to serve, along with Prime Minister Jean Max Bellerive, as the International Co-Chair of the Interim Haiti Recovery Commission.
Through the generosity of Clinton Foundation supporters and partners, the total value of assistance to Haiti provided through the Foundation's efforts has been nearly $23 million to date.
The multi-media exhibit begins in the center's first floor Garden View Room where visitors walk through a brief history of Haiti. The exhibit then transitions into a look at the country during President Clinton's administration as well as post presidency. The Garden View Room also features beautiful, hand-crafted Haitian art that is representative of the spirit and the strength of the Haitian people.
Upstairs in the Temporary Gallery, the second half of the exhibit begins at 4:53 p.m. on Jan. 12, 2010, the exact time and date when the massive 7.0 earthquake struck Haiti near its capitol of Port-au-Prince. This portion of the exhibit is dedicated to the moments during and shortly after the earthquake, and the immediate and on-going relief efforts to recover and rebuild Haiti.
Throughout the exhibit, the Center offers "The Haiti: Building Back Better Tour for School Groups." The tour highlights President Clinton's current work and his continued support to Haiti. Students will see the effects of the January 12, 2010, earthquake in Haiti and will learn about the resilience of the Haitian people and the economic value of art to the Haitian community.
Haiti: Building Back Better is in cooperation of the Smithsonian Institution through its Haiti Cultural Recovery Project.
Serge Jolimeau and Michee Ramil Remy was organized by the Museum of Contemporary Art, North Miami, Florida, U.S.A. and was curated by Bonnie Clearwater.