The Haitian Barber

One of my first discoveries on Jarry Street in Villeray was the red, white and blue barber's pole of Hans Coiffure. From the street I spotted a wall full of what I believed to be African masks, but when I later ventured in for a closer look, I discovered that they were from Haiti.

In addition to selling masks and wood carvings, Hans also has some colourful oil paintings on sale from some talented Haitian-born painters, with prices ranging from $350 to $400. But above all, this is a lively barber shop, with plenty of chit chat and Caribbean music. The people on hand were more than willing to explain some aspect of the art on display.

There was a particularly moving painting of a ship carrying a large number of passengers with many people below floating on pieces of wood and debris in shark-infested waters. Was this a depiction of the Haitian boat lift from the early to mid 80s? I can't be sure because when I called Hans to inquire, he told me that he was too busy cutting hair to answer.

Some of these paintings and masks are well worth a look. Drop by to see the art display at Hans Coiffure, 630 Jarry East just a block East of Jarry Metro.

For further reading on the Haitian boat lift between Haiti and South Florida in the Los Angeles Times click here.



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