Born on March 6, 1947 in Jérémie, Haiti, Fravrange Valcin, aka Valcin II, began to paint in the shadow of his uncle Gérard Valcin when he was 22 years old. He then was far from imagining that his work would have been an indelible piece in the great national artistic mosaic inherited from the best Haitian artists. His painting evolved from commonplace realism to a social commitment; it was called “cruel”. In the 1970s, he was cataloged as being part of the school of “Realism of Cruelty” because he refused to follow the example of those who wanted to please the “elite” by producing mute art characterized by profile of women and unusual objects placed in a generally standard or two-dimensional space. He therefore dared to denounce social injustice and to reveal what others are afraid to expose for fear of disturbing or being banned from the circuit of commercialization.
The works of Valcin II fit into a historical-socio-economic space that forces us to consider the deteriorating conditions of the poor, the exploited and the despised. He combines great technique with vivid storytelling and social content to denounce social and economic injustice in Haiti and other developing countries. His painting “Boat People” is a powerful tribute to the many Haitians who are lost at sea trying to escape oppression, terror and poverty at home.
His works are also marked by a great sensibility. It is because Valcin II is often part of the subject he treats and dissolves into it at times. The three-dimensional is his privileged domain; he makes his characters move to such a point that they sometimes give the impression of wanting to step outside of the frame.
The art of Valcin II has not stopped evolving: Realism, Cubism, Impressionism, Constructivism – all of these movements have characterized his work. His latest search is oriented towards a form of abstraction where he prioritizes lines and curves. He thus is able to create movement and especially vibration in his canvasses.
Valcin’s works have been exhibited in various art galleries throughout North and South America, Europe, Asia, and the Caribbean as well as being featured on several books and newspapers. He also won numerous prizes and honors.
Fravrange Valcin died on December 2010 at the age of 63.