Written By Jonel Juste
May 10, 2023 at 6:07 PM

Haitian Heritage Month performances at PAMM. Image courtesy of PAMM.

Pérez Art Museum Miami (PAMM) is hosting a special event on May 13, celebrating Haiti’s deep roots in South Florida and its language, people, and culture on one of its Free Second Saturdays.

“This year, we’re marking more than 50 years of Haitian migration to South Florida and celebrating the vibrant history, culture, and contributions of the community at large,” said Franklin Sirmans, PAMM Museum Director. “Miami has one of the largest Haitian American populations in the nation, and we’re honored to have the opportunity to showcase some of the incredible artists across our collection, programming, and neighborhood.”

PAMM Free Second Saturdays is a monthly event that welcomes art lovers and provides the community with free access to the museum. The museum creates special programming and hands-on-art activities during this time.

May is Haitian Heritage Month in Miami, and May 18th marks the observance of Haitian Flag Day in Haiti and among Haitian communities in the US, making this second Saturday an ideal opportunity for the museum to celebrate the creativity, art, and culture of Haiti.

Art making at PAMM for past Haitian Heritage Month. Image courtesy of PAMM.

“Each second Saturday, the museum explores specific themes or cultural celebrations that are relevant to the communities of South Florida and provides a moment to recognize the important stories and cultural expressions of our diverse communities,” said Marie Vickles, Senior Director of Education at Pérez Art Museum Miami.

“As a cultural institution that sits at the crossroads of the Americas, it is our responsibility to educate and entertain by sharing representations of the milieu of cultures that make up Miami,” added museum director Franklin Sirmans.

This is not the first time PAMM is showcasing Haitian art and culture during Haitian Heritage Month, said Marie Vickles. “We’ve been facilitating dedicated Haitian Heritage month programming for over 4 years now with ongoing Haitian-focused programs and exhibitions since we’ve been in existence as a museum.”

The event will take place on the museum’s waterfront terrace, and there will be a variety of activities for visitors to enjoy, according to the organizers.

From 11:00 AM to 6:00 PM, visitors will be able to participate in art-making activities on the museum’s East Portico. PAMM’s teaching artists will carefully craft an art activity referencing the works and exhibitions on view.

During the event, attendees will have the opportunity to listen to Haitian music played by DJ Graematter. Additionally, remarks will be given by leaders from the Haitian community as well as PAMM Director. Following the remarks, there will be a performance by Tradisyon Lakou Lakay, a Haitian folk music band.

Haitian folk music band and J Perry during 2019 Haitian Heritage Month performances at PAMM. Image courtesy of PAMM.

“As a Haitian artist, a culture ambassador, performances like this mean a lot to me personally as well as to the organization’s mission,” said Weiselande ‘Yanui’ César, dancer/choreographer and founding executive director of Tradisyon Lakou Lakay (TLL) whose vision is to leverage Haitian performance art in South Florida, “the incubator of Haitian culture.”

“We want to come to a time when Haitian dance, specifically folkloric dance, finds its place in non-conventional spaces,” she added.

On May 4, PAMM kicked off Haitian Heritage Month with a live set by DJ Gardy Girault featuring his distinctive merging of Afro-Haitian rara rhythms and electronic house music that he refers to as “rara tech.” The evening also included dance performances by Tradisyon Lakou Lakay, a flag display sharing the history of the Haitian flag, and Haitian-inspired food and drinks.

WHAT: PAMM Free Second Saturdays: Haitian Heritage Month
WHERE: Pérez Art Museum Miami, 1103 Biscayne Blvd., Miami, FL 33132
WHEN: May 13th, 11:00 AM – 6:00 PM
COST: Free
INFORMATION: visit or call 305 375 3000


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