Français English
Rhodnie Désir

Born of Haitian parents, this Montreal artist articulates her craft through languages specifically created for each of her works. Using innovative spoken or sung language, a series of movements emerge to mark a unique moment in time. The result is a dynamic contemporary illustration derived from the traditions of Haiti as well as Central and West Africa. Her signature is clearly her love of objects and their multidimensional approach, narratively as well as symbolically. She successfully draws a connection between individual memories of the present and the collective memory of the past.

Désir is a Communications and Marketing graduate of the University of Montreal and HEC Montreal. She has a certificate from SAJE Montreal Metro in starting a business and has completed The Professional and Artistic Training Program in Dance (Zab Maboungou / Compagnie Danse Nyata Nyata). Over the years, she has attended professional workshops with such masters as Koffi Kôkô, Salia Sanou, Lena Blou, Peniel Guerrier and Sully Cally.

Her flagship work BOW'T (2013) has shone on the local and international scene (Burkina Faso, Brazil, Martinique, Haiti), adds to its repertoire of eight works (VÍ, VÍ [REC], É'TA, BOW'T, AYEWA, D2US'T, DUSK SOCIETY, and from 2017: MWON'D) and her collaborations with the contemporary Martinique company Art & Fact (DEUX LOVE ME TENDER - 2016-2017 / Martinique, Cuba).

In 2015, she was the only Canadian artist to be invited as an expert panelist at the seminar “Artists and the Memory of Slavery: Resistance, creative freedom and legacies” (UNESCO).

In 2016, Rhodnie started the BOW'T TRAIL, her international choreographic and documentary project. Innovative, this strong valorization of Afrodescendant immaterial heritage leads her to Martinique, Haiti and Brazil and Halifax (Canada). As well, since 2008, Rhodnie is also the businesswoman behind the cultural action company DÊZAM (2008 -...) and Rhodnie Désir Créations (2017). She is frequently invited as a lecturer in universities (UConcordia, Duke University, UQUAM, CELAT …) and involved in the advancement of her community.

She is frequently invited as a lecturer in universities (UConcordia, Duke University, UQUAM, CELAT …) and involved in the advancement of her community. As an example, she sat on the board of the Festival Quartiers Danses, the Regroupement Québécois de la Danse (and presided its diversity committee), and is now the President of Montreal, Art Intercultural’s Board of Directors ; in addition to being frequently invited by the Councils for the Arts (CALQ / CAC) to act as a jury of peers.