The Fire

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On August 16th 1791, in the eleventh month of the Haitian Revolution, slaves from the Limbé district set fire to a wealthy French estate. During their subsequent interrogation they revealed the names of rebellion leaders, further advancing the story of the revolution. As the story of the rebellion spread over the island, slaves vowed to burn as many plantations as possible. Fiery acts such as these became more common as the revolution gathered steam, harming humans and animals alike and leaving the once beautiful Haitian landscape black and smoldering. In this block, the artist has used fake flower petals, red marbles, and enlarged images of orange microscopic organisms to create the sensation of heat and flames while also incorporating allusions to nature. The block revolves around an image depicting a burning plantation and a rioting mass of people running with arms raised, a scene from the 1791 revolt. On the left, a figure wearing a crown hangs from a tree, perhaps symbolizing the persecution of the Haitian people at the hands of French colonists.