“Nou se wozo, nou pliye nou pa kase.” | “We are reeds, we bend but we don’t break.”
With proverb as its entry point, Reeds/Wozo: Movement Study I features a Haitian woman in various bending positions - cooking, washing clothes, praying - symbolizing the parallels of physical labor to the durability of reeds. A clip from historian Professor Bayyinah Bello speaking on the role of women in The Haitian Revolution echoes throughout the two-channel video as she works. The women face each other, juxtaposing labor on the island with labor in Miami’s Haitian diaspora. However, in both scenes, her location is unknown and she moves without any sense of place. Where is she, and where is home?
Monica Sorelle is a Haitian-American filmmaker and artist born & based in Miami. Her work explores alienation and displacement, and preserves cultural traditions within Miami & the Caribbean with a focus on the African & Latin diasporas that reside there. Her photo and video work has been shown in group exhibitions at Oolite Arts and the University of Maryland, and supported by Pérez Art Museum Miami’s Caribbean Cultural Institute Artist Fellowship, Locust Project’s Wavemaker Grant, and Miami-Dade County Department of Cultural Affairs. Monica’s feature film directorial debut, Mountains (2023), has been awarded at Tribeca Festival and BlackStar Film Festival, and selected at Toronto International Film Festival.
Support for Reeds/Wozo: Movement Study I was provided by Pérez Art Museum Miami’s Caribbean Cultural Institute.