Just because you’re poor, it doesn't mean you don’t have the right to a Hollywood-style wedding. With characteristically southern generosity, Haitians can spend a lifetime’s worth of savings on a single day.
This content was published on June 19, 2020 - 11:00
After some years in the regional print and broadcast media in French Switzerland, in 2000 I joined Radio Swiss International, which then became swissinfo.ch. Since then I have been writing (and producing short videos) on a variety of subjects, from politics to business, and including culture and science.
Thomas Kern was born in Switzerland in 1965. Trained as a photographer in Zürich, he started working as a photojournalist in 1989. He was a founder of the Swiss photographers agency Lookat Photos in 1990. Thomas Kern has won twice a World Press Award and has been awarded several Swiss national scholarships. His work has been widely exhibited and it is represented in various collections.
As she did in Switzerland on assignments as a wedding photographer, Valérie Baeriswyl has slipped behind the scenes of such Haitian marriages to capture the “anxiety mixed with euphoria, a universal prelude to the vows of eternal love”.
“I took boats, motorcycles, vans and donkeys. I have attended peasant weddings, entered the lemon-coloured palaces of the beautiful districts of Port-au-Prince, the mud houses of the slums, and the rented rooms where what remains in Haiti of a middle class still believes in a future”, she wrote in the preamble to her work, which earned her a scholarship with the Reuters news agency last year.
Now she is looking for a publisher to make a book from this “exceptional showcase of traditions, the Americanization of an island, social divides and daily resistance”.