If Only Haiti Were in the Hamptons /// Donna Karen Does Something for Haiti or Something like That

One of our readers kindly passed along this flier outside Donna Karen’s NYC space/store, Urban Zen:

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First, thank you, gracious reader. For, it is actions like this that make the world a better place.

Anyway, “Haiti in the Hamptons” is something (though I can’t really tell what) “honoring the women of artisans of the ‘Discover Haiti’ Exhibition.” Apparently it has something to do with “The Haiti Artisan Project,” which according to DKNY Clothing founder and yogini, Donna Karen:

“…is a way to help develop, market and present the work of Haitian artists to the Western world. The goal is to help create and support self-sustaining artisan communities within Haiti with the goal of teaching real skills and marketability and raising awareness of Haiti’s artisan products in the western world.”

Not only that, but to quote the East Hampton Patch:

“100 percent of all proceeds raised from craft sales will go back to the Haitian artisans who made them.”

Now, people with a much greater issue with rich whites helping poor browns who are poor due to the lifestyles that makes it possible for rich whites to help poor browns (ad infinitum) will have much more to say about this than any of us. We just think calling something “Haiti in the Hamptons” is AWESOME! This is especially true when you think about all those pesky Haitian statistics:

  • Gross national income per capita is US$660, about half the total for Nicaragua, the second poorest country in the Americas
  • 78% of Haitians are poor (less than US$2 a day), and more than half (54%) live in extreme poverty (less than US$1 a day).
  • In rural areas, poverty and extreme poverty rates are estimated to be 84% and 69% respectively.
  • Over two-thirds of the labor force do not have formal jobs.
  • Life expectancy is 61 years.
  • Half of children under 5 are malnourished.
  • Over 7% of children die at birth.
  • For every 100,000 births, 523 women died in Haiti, compared to eight maternal deaths for every 100,000 births in Europe.
  • 80 out of 1,000 Haitian children never see their first birthday.

I mean, I guess I can picture Haiti in the Hamptons, so long as we’re talking about…

“Haiti on the Grounds of the Hamptons Mansion”

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“Haiti in the Dining Room of the Hamptons Home”

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“Haiti on the Lawn of a Hamptons Bocci Ball Match”

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“Haiti on the Deck at a Hamptons Pool Party”

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Although, my biggest issue with all this has to be having to swallow more of that same old all-things-artisanal-must-be-good steaming pile of BS.

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Fuck artisanal beards

I mean, some of us just call making stuff “making stuff,” because we all know that calling something “artisanal” is just a way to charge more for something you can do yourself if you weren’t such a lazy fuck.

Whatever. Here’s a video regarding “artisans of Haiti,” which, aside from being a nice move in projecting an image of Haiti that isn’t riddled with death and despair, still can’t get enough of the artisanal bandwagon. Pooh on artisans. Hooray for Haitians!

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11 comments

  1. Natalie

    Who does Donna Karan remind me of in the video? Perhaps Edina Monsoon from the iconic AB FAB?

  2. “I mean, some of us just call making stuff “making stuff,” because we all know that calling something “artisanal” is just a way to charge more for something you can do yourself if you weren’t such a lazy fuck.”

    Thank you!

    [And according to Austin Kleon (Steal Like an Artist), it doesn’t even have to be original.]

  3. Is Donna Karan working for the Clinton Foundation now, given the CF’s extreme focus on Haiti in recent years?
    I dunno. This reeks of white liberal guilt under the image of “joyful development”. Seriously, what would happen if that Haitian woman or kid did randomly wander into one of the Hampton parties with Gwynnie-poo and the gals from Sex and the City there? State paratroopers would probably be called in.
    Personally, I prefer Wilbur Sagunaraj’s take on engagement with the poor.

  4. vern

    Nothing like a non-artisan to get bend out of shape by artisans.

  5. Garuda

    I really like the video. It silently showed the craft of a land that time forgot, that Mother Nature continuously drags through the shit, and it showed that despite the hardships of living in a Banana Republic, joy can be found in a child’s song.
    If the Hampton set finds it kitschy, I dont care. If it is white guilt, does it really matter?
    In the USA we presume that we have “IT” better. Meh!

  6. Hummmmmmmmmmmmmm, This Is Classic Of The Classic Feel Good BS, That Goes On In This Country. This Is Not Meant As A Judgement, “From Within, All Comes Forth”.

    This Is SAD and Then People Still Ask Why The World Is In The State That It Is. I Guess As Long As We Are In the Hamptons, or Where Ever Else The Safe Pearly Gates May Be, and It Does Not Touch Us. Then All Is Good.

    SAD, Very SAD State, Thank You For ” Although, my biggest issue with all this has to be having to swallow more of that same old all-things-artisanal-must-be-good steaming pile of BS.”

    Thank You ♡ ♡ ♡

  7. the moment already came

    I would like to point out that only in the East Hampton Patch is giving 100% of the proceeds from a craft sale to the person who made the craft considered a newsworthy item. What a novel evolution of commerce Donna Karan has invented.

    Especially when you consider that “proceeds” is a term that holds no meaning in accounting, and can be effortlessly squeezed to mean “leftover money after we paid Haitian prices for these friendship bracelets and minus costs shipping them to Sag Harbor via endangered albino tiger, then throwing a catered party, then framing some pictures of anonymous brownies with reclaimed driftwood, then paying for the members of Vampire Weekend to give us reacharounds.”

  8. Lalalala

    Haiti is not in “the West?” WTF! Perhaps DK confused “the West” with “First World.”

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