Frederic’s voice comes through colors and technique
By Daniel Higgins, Press Gazette Media
“You have to lose yourself to find yourself.”
That’s a bit of wisdom and a mantra for Gregory Frederic, one of the artists participating in the 25th annual Artigras next weekend at Shopko Hall in Ashwaubenon.
It’s not unusual for him to get so lost in his work that he’ll work through the night, only realizing how long he’s been painting because the sun begins to flood through the bountiful windows of the living floor in his Suamico home where he works.
“I can stare one or two hours at one painting. People are going to think I’m crazy. Sometimes I lay on the floor and think what did I see.”
The result of Gregory’s journey artistic forays is a painting that is somewhat cubist, a bit abstract but always bursting with vibrant colors and uniquely his style.
“It’s something I feel, because I have so many colors; colors are always coming.”
Growing up and attending school in Port-au-Prince, Haiti, Gregory never took an art class — none were offered. The lack of formal art education couldn’t quill his artistic passion. As he talks about art, he often repeats the phrase, “keep moving, keep moving,” as if the artistic force bubbling inside him couldn’t be contained even if he wanted to.
“When I was little, I liked drawing. They don’t really teach that at school in my country,” said Gregory. “I kept drawing and drawing at home, but my parents didn’t care about that because they don’t know about it, because it’s not taught at school.”
After graduating high school in 2006, Gregory knew he didn’t have money to attend university but was mentored by a friend and professional artists. Eventually he was traveling around with artists who painted murals all across Haiti.
“After high school, I can’t let this brain stop,” said Gregory. “I need to figure out something. I say this is one way I’m going to speak to people; what I know in my head. I choose my color, I use my technique to talk to them.”