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Karen Miranda Augustine & Ketty Paul


The Three Erzulies / Ezilis yo Twa

Real heroines are usually special, but regular, everyday people who have done remarkable and very giving things. They don't win awards, aren't always considered newsworthy and are rarely thanked on a regular basis. Yet they live their lives in service, impacting many in their communities with their talents, generosity and support, often sacrificing themselves for others with little fanfare. And when they have passed from this life, what we are left with are wonderfully warm memories and gratefulness for having experienced them in our lives.



This work will be a contemporary, Haitian twist to the Greek/Roman myth The Three Furies: Tisophone (avenger of murder), Megaera (the jealous) and Alecto (relentless anger) — all defenders of moral and legal order. Like the Furies, Erzulie's attributes are jealously, vengeance and discord, with her true powers used to defend women and children who are victims of domestic abuse, as well as newly consecrated Vodou priests and priestesses, artists, business women and men who truly respect and honour women. Visually, she is portrayed as a Black Madonna, bearing two scars on her cheek, often a knife in her hand to ward off enemies.

As one of Haiti's most revered *lwas, I find it fitting that this work embody several symbolic aspects of her attributes as they relate to each female subject in question. These women may range from the well‐ to lesser‐ known and may include a community worker, an activist, business owner, teacher, healer, artist, family member or friend of distinct character.



The Three Erzulies / Ezilis yo Twa was created in collaboration by Marie Ketty Paul (a Haitian drapo artist, Bel Air) and Karen Miranda Augustine (a Canadian mixed‐media artist, Toronto) to honour two Vodouisants and women's rights advocate/**Kay Fanm co‐founder Magalie Marcelin. The Three Erzulies / Ezilis yo Twa is comprised of three ***pacquets kongo made to honour three unsung Haitian heroines. This work will serve to memorialize, attract the blessings and celebrate the lives of three significant female community ancestors, while acknowledging the Divine aspects of the Erzulie lwa.

In Port-au-Prince, January 2012, the work was passed onto Maïlé Alphonse — daughter of Magalie Marcelin — where it now comprises part of her altar, nestled between a photo of Marcelin and a painting of Queen Anacaona of Haiti.


* Lwa (a.k.a. loa) is/are the spirits.

**(Kay Fanm is a shelter for women and girls who have been victims of domestic and sexual assault.

***Pacquets Kongo (pronounced: pah‐kay) are "medicine bags" given to Vodou initiates. They contain herbs, charms and special healing tools associated with the lwa that they are being initiated under.


LINK TO: The Three Erzulies / Ezilis yo Twa

LINK TO: 2nd Ghetto Biennale 2011 - My First Three Days

LINK TO: 2nd Ghetto Biennale 2011

LINK TO: Boat Trip: Last Day in Port-au-Prince


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Enquiries & questions contact: Leah Gordon at:




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Enquiries and questions contact
Leah Gordon at: