Toussaint L’Ouverture

Paintings from this series were exhibited at the Johnston Collection’s 2018-2019 summer exhibition “Home Grown” (November 2018- February 2019)

My latest work comprises of representations of Toussaint L’Ouverture and other paintings that explore colonial histories in particular British history relating to the British East India Company.

I first became aware of L’Ouverture from the book The Black Jacobins by C.L.R.James which I read many tears ago and I saw a staged version at the Riverside Studios in London in the 1980s. Recently I’ve become aware of L’Ouverture’s representation as a 18th Century French gilded clock in the Johnson Collection, Melbourne. Unsurprisingly, there are many depictions of the famous ex-slave who led the only successful slave rebellion in history-the clock is an attempt by a defeated colonial power to ridicule L’Ouverture and his military achievement. Additionally, I’ve been thinking about slavery and who is a slave to whom or what and I found Herman Melville’s novella Benito Cereno great reading also.

A brown man asks a black man which way?83x92

A brown man asks a black man which way 92 x 83

Toussaint L’Ouverture 112 x 137

77x51Self-portrait after Girodet's portrait of Jean-Baptiste Belley

Self-portrait after Girodet’s portrait of Jean-Baptiste Belley, 77 x 51

Eurasian couple102 x 86<

Eurasian couple 102 x 86

Self-portrait with cannon102x92

Self-portrait with cannon 102 x 92

Eurasian with 17th century wig86x61

Eurasian with 17th century wig 86 x 61

Stand-ins at Fort Cornwallis92x76

Stand-ins at Fort Cornwallis 92 x 76

Toussaint clock.76x51jpg

Toussaint clock 76 x 51


Toussaint profile 72×57 cm


Toussaint 1 30×30 cm

Toussaint 3 72×57 cm


Toussaint 2 30×30 cm


The Laughing Cavalier 76×61


Stand-in at Fort Cornwallis 76 x 51 cm


Spice walk 76 x 51


Servant 4 76×51 cm


Servant 3 61×51 cm


Servant 2 72×57 cm


Servant 1 72×57 cm

Toussaint on horseback1

Toussaint on horseback 1 122 x 92 cm

Toussaint on horseback2

Toussaint on horseback 2 122 x 92 cm

Toussaint with elephants

Toussaint with elephants 72 x 56 cm

The ventriloqusit with dummie1

The ventriloquist with dummie 1 102 x 81 cm

The ventriloqusit with dummie2

The ventriloquist with dummie 2 93 x 76 cm

One thought on “Toussaint L’Ouverture”

  1. Fresh, powerful and strong work. Different hats, horses, swords and servants; the struggle still goes on. Its rare art that can articulate this with such dignity. Great work.

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