LOUSY T-SHIRTS IN HAITI

Lousy T-shirts In Haiti
Comments

LOUSY T-SHIRTS IN HAITI



Written by Aisha Nozari
10 Wednesday 10th July 2013

Haitian photographers Paolo Woods and Ben Depp present their captivating project ‘Pepe’. Its focus is to examine the globalization of the textile industry by drawing attention to the appalling North-South relationship.  Let’s begin with the basics, Pepe is the name given to second hand garments currently arriving by box load at Croix-des-Bossales market, situated just off Port au Prince's Fifth Avenue. These containers are literally stuffed full of clothes. Not sounding too fucked up just yet? Well here’s how it works. The whole thing is essentially one big cycle - the clothes arriving at Port au Prince harbor were once upon a time produced there. T-shirts are made by Haitians in Port au Prince, shipped off to retailers such as Walmart, sweated up by Americans, then returned to the makers. The Pepe business has already forced thousands of Haitians out of trade. Not only that - these t-shirts sport horrifically ironic slogans.

I’m sure you’re aware that America is pretty into slogans. Ever seen those ‘Honk if you love Jesus’ bumper stickers? They suck. As it turns out, the back of a car and t-shirts are Americas favorite place for self-expression. No, I’m not diverging here, this is all totally relevant. You see these branded t-shirts arrive back in Port au Prince to be worn by Haitians who, unable to translate the slogans into Creole, end up sporting racy phrases. Woods comments it is ‘increasingly difficult to see a Haitian wearing something that has not been previously worn by an American.’

The project is available to see in full on Institute, who also manager the artists. Have a gander at some images below.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Don't Panic attempt to credit photographers and content owners wherever possible, however due to the sheer size and nature of the internet this is sometimes impractical or impossible. If you see any images on our site which you believe belong to yourself or another and we have incorrectly used it please let us know at panic@dontpaniconline.com and we will respond asap.



Comments

MORE FROM DON'T PANIC