|The First Art Newspaper on the Net
||Established in 1996
|| Friday, December 9, 2016
|Martha Stewart, Macy's CEO and a High-End Fashion Designer Studying Haiti Crafts |
The top executive of Macy's Terry Lundgren looks at Haitian jars during a visit to an artisans center in Croix des Bouquets, on the outskirts of Port-au-Prince, Haiti, Wednesday, July 27, 2011. Terry Lundgren, businesswoman Martha Steward and high-end fashion designer Rachel Roy landed in the Haitian capital Wednesday on a day trip to explore business opportunities, promote foreign investment and even renew purchase orders for the metal and papier-mache handicrafts for which the Caribbean nation has long been known.(AP Photo/Dieu Nalio Chery.
By: Trenton Daniel, Associated Press
PORT-AU-PRINCE (AP).- Martha Stewart, Macy's top executive and a high-end fashion designer landed in the Haitian capital Wednesday to do a little shopping. The aim of the day trip was to explore business opportunities, promote foreign investment and even renew purchase orders for the metal and papier-mache handicrafts for which the Caribbean nation has long been known.
"It's a commercial visit," Stewart told The Associated Press. "We're talking business."
Stewart and fashion designer Rachel Roy came to Haiti at the invitation of Macy's Chairman and CEO Terry Lundgren to meet with Haitian artisans and see the crafts they have been making and selling in 25 of his stores in the United States since October.
"I wanted them to see, like I'm seeing firsthand, the beautiful products that are being made here," Lundgren said as workers clanked away on metal sculptures in the courtyard of a studio on the northeastern edge of Port-au-Prince.
On Wednesday, Macy's placed a new order for 2,500 items. Stewart, who visited Haiti in the 1970s and '80s, and Roy bought beaded and sequined bags, cushion covers, bracelets, earrings and quilts.
The genesis of the artisan project goes back to May of last year when the Clinton Foundation gathered investors, aid workers and artisans in New York to figure out ways to connect Haiti with international retailers.
Macy's, Fairwinds Trading and the BrandAid Foundation developed a plan for Macy's to commission Haitian handicrafts, which the retailer began selling in its stores and online in time for last year's Christmas season.
On macys.com, prices for the Haitian items range from a vase that costs $54 to a large bowl that sells for $120. Paintings of Haiti's marketplaces are also on sale at $109.
"We sold out and sold well," Lundgren told journalists as he paused among tables topped with salad bowls, jewelry, patchwork quilts and chairs made of recycled metal.
Working from that campaign, the Clinton Bush Haiti Fund gave more than $600,000 in grants and loans to Fairwinds Trading, Aid to Artisans and the BrandAid Foundation to help develop Haiti's artisan sector.
The project aims to create jobs and build artisan communities so Haitians are not entirely dependent upon handouts from overseas an idea touted as "trade not aid."
Macy's has participated in similar projects before. In 2005, the retailer began selling hand-woven baskets from the African nation of Rwanda.
The project in Haiti now employs 450 artisans, and their earnings range from 25 percent to 38 percent of the retail price for each item sold in the Macy's collection.
The profits help pay for meals, school tuition and even repairs to their homes damaged in the January 2010 earthquake. The organizers also believe that income will spill into the neighborhoods of Croix-des-Bouquets and Jacmel, two cities long famous for their artistic communities.
Artisan Brutus Jean-Carlo, a native of Croix-des-Bouquets, said Macy's orders are giving him $250 extra a month.
"It's helping me a little, but I'd like a larger contract," the 35-year-old said.
The number of artisans employed is expected to grow as interest grows, Lundgren said.
The shopping visit comes at an uncertain time for potential investors and Haitians themselves.
Haiti is still recovering from the earthquake, and the new administration of President Michel Martelly has yet to install a prime minister and Cabinet after almost three months in office.
Haitian business leaders have expressed concern that the absence of a prime minister could prove a barrier for economic development and foreign investment.
Still, one artisan has hopes the trip by Stewart and the others could encourage other international companies to invest in Haiti despite the challenges.
"If Haiti has a label, handicrafts should be one of them," said Einstein Albert, the 41-year-old owner of a family artisan business. "If Fairwinds and Macy's come, I think other companies will come."
Copyright 2011 The Associated Press.
July 29, 2011
Featuring Some of Japan's Top Art Talent, Earthquake-Postponed Art Fair Tokyo 2011 Opens
Bureau of Land Management Suggests Changes on Christo's Colorado Proposal
Archive of "Rebel Without a Cause" Director Acquired by the Harry Ransom Center
Walmart Donates $20M to Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art to Sponsor Admission
Preparations for Major Medieval Show at the Liebieghaus Skulpturensammlung in Full Swing
Phillips de Pury & Co. Announces Highlights From September London Design Auction
R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Company Provides 3,000 Pieces of Art to Arts Council
Exhibition on Notable Artist Liu Kang to Commemorate Centennial Year of His Birth
Henry Moore Institute Opens First Solo Exhibition by Artist Mario Merz in the UK for Nearly Thirty Years
Sixteen New Galleries Unveiled in Dramatic Transformation at the National Museum of Scotland
National Museum of American History Showcases Life and Laughs of Phyllis Diller
Australian Artist Andrew Rogers Completes the Arch of Memory, the World's Largest Basalt Arch
Bonhams Appoint Richard Harvey as Global Head of Wine With Sales in London, HK, LA and SF
Road To 2012: A Local Story on View at the View Tube in London
Ducati Launches Official Motorcycle Racer Valentino Rossi Art Collection
Smithsonian's National Postal Museum Celebrates Owney the Postal Dog
Alexander McQueen: Savage Beauty at the Metropolitan to Stay Open Until Midnight on Last Two Nights
Martha Stewart, Macy's CEO and a High-End Fashion Designer Studying Haiti Crafts
The Museum of Modern Art Announces a Change in Admission Prices; $25 for Adults
'Snapshot' Exhibition at Van Gogh Museum will Zoom in on Artists' Everyday Lives
Relaunch of Science Museum Exhibition: Space at the Science Museum
Bridge Honors Massachusetts, Rhode Island Couple Killed on 9/11
Most Popular Last Seven Days
1.- Dutch National Museum of Ethnology says ancient Mixtec skull a forgery
2.- Sotheby's Russian Art Sales soar over estimate to £13.8m / $17.2m
3.- Pirelli's new 'feminist' calendar sexes up the wrinkles
4.- Black Death burial pit found by archaeologists at English 14th-century abbey
5.- It's a squeeze, but Paris Impressionist museum is still a hit after 30 years
6.- Versailles presents the infinite variety and ingenuity of entertainment in the court
7.- Van Gogh Museum rules out debate over 'lost' notebook
8.- Wife of Putin aide shocks with Holocaust-themed skating routine
9.- A visitor's guide to Art Basel Miami Beach and beyond
10.- President-elect Donald Trump, politics on the mind at Art Basel Miami Beach
Museums, Exhibits, Artists, Milestones, Digital Art, Architecture, Photography,
Photographers, Special Photos, Special Reports, Featured Stories, Auctions, Art Fairs,
Anecdotes, Art Quiz, Education, Mythology, 3D Images, Last Week, .
|Royalville Communications, Inc|
Tell a Friend
Dear User, please complete the form below in order to recommend the Artdaily newsletter to someone you know.
Please complete all fields marked *.