SIBF 2021 celebrates nomadic life of prolific Canadian author, Dany Laferrière

SIBF 2021 celebrates nomadic life of prolific Canadian author, Dany Laferrière

Un Coeur Nomade’, at the 40thSharjah International Book Fair, is a colourful immersion into the world of Haitian-born author and illustrator from Canada

Sharjah, November 6, 2021

An open-air, urban exhibition at the 40thSharjah International Book Fair (SIBF) is taking visitors on an intriguing journey into the nomadic life of one of Canada’s most celebrated authors, Dany Laferrière, as it traces his path from a free-spirited childhood in Haiti where his artistic sense first developed, to a sudden departure to Montreal, the city of his exile. It was here that the 23-year-old surrounded himself with books and literature, and where his life as a writer took shape.  

The exhibition, ‘Un Coeur Nomade’ (A Nomadic Heart), comprises large panels filled with charming drawings and descriptions in French, which are lined up outside the main entrance of Expo Centre Sharjah.

The exhibition, organised by the Department of Global Affairs, Canada, also leads visitors onto Laferrière’s sojourn in Miami, the city where he completely immersed himself in writing and which complemented his career as an author, and onward to Paris, where he became one of the few non-French citizens to receive the nation’s highest literary honour – an induction into the Académie Française.

The exhibition carries descriptions in Arabic to make a connection with local and regional lovers of global literature and art, and is enhanced by a unique audio component that evokes in the visitor some of the feelings and emotions expressed in the panels. The soundscape that changes from one panel to the next captures the energy of the cities the author called home, conjuring up visions of the Haitian surf or the Parisienne street-side cafes, while the guitars and saxophone are reminiscent of Montreal’s vibrant music scene.

Words flow with the sound and pictures bring to life the various stages of Dany Laferrière’s career path, highlighting how each of the cities have shaped his life and inspired his writing. Representing the first 35 years of his career, the show takes after the author’s graphic novels, L’exil vaut le voyage, Vers d’autres rives, and Autoportrait de Paris avec Chat.

A revered Canadian writer and author of more than 20 novels, Dany Laferrière’s writings speak of the idea of being nomadic as he lyrically chronicles the migrant experience.

Laferrière’s works represent the excellence of Canadian literature and the Un Coeur Nomade exhibition at SIBF 2021 reinforces the commitment of Canada to strengthen intercultural dialogues with the emirate and the UAE, said an exhibition representative.


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