Along with Hector Hyppolite, Philomé Obin (1892 – 1986), a native of Bas Limbé, was responsible for the mid-20th century flourishing of Haitian art. Obin had the confidence to send his painting, The Arrival of President Roosevelt in Cap-Haitien, to the newly opened Centre d’Art in 1944. It piqued the director’s interest in self-taught artists. Obin became the head of a distinct style of painting known as the Cap-Haitien school, with an emphasis on daily life, street scenes and history reflecting Haiti’s colonial past.
The president of Haiti awarded Obin the highest government honor for his artistic contributions to the country’s cultural life in 1976. More than a dozen of his relatives also became painters. Obin contributed two murals, The Crucifixion and The Last Supper, to the Episcopal Holy Trinity Cathedral, in Port-au-Prince. His work is in the permanent collections of the Musée d’Art Haitien du College Saint Pierre, in Port-au-Prince; Ramapo College of New Jersey, in Mahwah, New Jersey; the Waterloo Center for the Arts, in Waterloo, Iowa; and the Museum of Modern Art, in New York City, among other institutions.
From “Masterpieces of Haitian Art: Seven Decades of Unique Visual Heritage” by Candice Russell. Schiffer Publications Ltd, 2013.