David Grégoire : Creole architecture in 84 photographs

David Grégoire: "Culture is what makes me move forward. It is necessary to have this capacity to receive something from other people",

From January 20 to February 10, the public is invited to the Centre Culturel Rémi Nainsouta where is held the exhibition entitled “Habitations d’hier et d’aujourd’hui à Pointe-à-Pitre” (Houses of yesterday and today in Pointe-à-Pitre), organized as part of “Les Journées du Patrimoine Pointois” (Pointe-à-Pitre Heritage Days). 84 photos of Creole architecture in the city belong to David Grégoire, a young amateur photographer and globetrotter native of Marmande (France), who has been living in Pointe-à-Pitre for three years.

Exposition David Grégoire 10a

David Grégoire is a 33-year-old young man from the city of Marmande in the south-west of France who enjoys traveling. After living in Paris for twelve years, he decided to explore the world. He visited several islands of the Caribbean such as Trinidad and Tobago, Barbados, Martinique, Grenada. Three years ago, the globetrotter settled down in Guadeloupe, more precisely in downtown Pointe-à-Pitre. Since his arrival, David Grégoire visited all the island to photograph landscapes, scenes of lives but also Creole houses in particular those in his new adopted city. “I like photography, I’ve been doing this for years”, he said his camera in his hand. Then, he shared his images on his Instagram account (IG_pointeapitre) and quickly he became well-known in Guadeloupe through social networks. This was how the municipality of Pointe-à-Pitre discovered his photos on the internet and invited him to take part in the “Journées du Patrimoine Pointois” which took place from January 26 to 28 with the theme “Creole architecture”.

Exposition David Grégoire 11a

Visitors of all ages

“They found my photos in line with the theme of “Heritage Days”. I had three weeks, so not much time, to prepare this exhibition but I considered this proposal as a challenge that I had to succeed. The day after the meeting with the organization, I walked through the city to take new pictures of Creole houses. Finally, in two days, the photos were printed, I was ready for the exhibition”, he told.

Since January 20 and until February 10, 84 photographs which belong to David Grégoire can be seen in the great room of the Centre Culturel Rémi Nainsouta as well as some photographs from the Bernard Hautin and Fonds Bogat collections taken between 1960 and 1970. This major photographic exhibition entitled “Habitations d’hier et d’aujourd’hui à Pointe-à-Pitre” (Houses of yesterday and today in Pointe-à-Pitre) has already attracted a large audience including elderly people who are delighted to see this beautiful Creole architecture they appreciate so much to be highlighted or this inhabitant of Guadeloupe who took pictures of the event in order to show them in Senegal where he has been living for several years… “There are also people who come and promise to come back with members of their families”, said the amateur photographer. This cultural event also allows David Grégoire to meet all Internet users in Guadeloupe who constantly encouraged him to exhibit his pictures. “During the opening, they came from several towns and communes of the island to meet me and see the photo exhibition, the median age was 27. I have only a little 1,400 followers on Instagram, which is not much, but my photos are known through networking…”, he said.

Exposition David Grégoire 12a

Culture to move forward

In addition, the photography enthusiast emphasizes that there are no texts in this exhibition voluntarily: “the tradition in Guadeloupe is first oral. The oral tradition is, I believe, richer, more alive, things on paper do not have the same consonance when they reach the brain (…) Almost all photos are in color, the black and white photos show that there was a break in tradition”, he added. The young man who is present every day in the exhibition room greatly appreciates this opportunity to meet Guadeloupean visitors and people from other countries as tourists and to discuss with them. “During the visit, women tell readily stories in relation to the theme of the exhibition, Creole house, inhabitants and I relay them. A few days ago, a lady told me shuddering anecdotes about a district of Pointe-à-Pitre… Men are more private”, he said. If several lawyers have already come to visit the exhibition, the young photographer has not yet exchanged words with local architects about Creole houses but it will not be long… “Culture is what makes me move forward, what makes you move forward. It is necessary to have this capacity to receive something from other people”, said David Grégoire.