Haiti 2010
Oil on canvas, 48 H x 59 W cm / 18.9 H x 23.2 W in
Created by Ofir Hirsh, under the Maduro identity in 2010.

Dealing with sad themes does not come naturally to me. Learning so much Jewish history since childhood, almost diminished my tolerance to tragedies, and while I’m very much aware of the sad side of life, I usually try to look at and show the happy side of it.
However, what happened in Haiti in 2010 was so close and cruel that I felt I must express it.
In the 12th of January 2010 my girlfriend and I drank our afternoon coffee in our balcony in Las-Terrenas, Dominican Republic. Suddenly, everything trembled for a few long seconds. Speechless, we looked at each other, and then it stopped. We learned from the internet that the center of the quake was somewhere in Haiti, the poor neighboring country. Soon after, the terrifying news were all over the place.
It was a catastrophic magnitude 7 earthquake. It effected more than 3 million people, killed 200,000,  injured 300,000, and left 1.5 million without a home. If that wasn’t enough, later that year a cholera epidemic infected and killed more Haitians.
Many naive people, including myself, hoped that this fatal earthquake will signal the turning point of this ill fated country, that the nations of the world would not allow such a hell on earth to exist, and that “The World” will finally save Haiti from its continuous misery. International rescue forces arrived right after the earthquake. Summits were organized, funds were raised, operations and projects were executed throughout the years. But sadly, almost 8 years later, Haiti remains the poorest country in the western hemisphere, a wretched and insecure place to live in. I will not blame any specific person, entity, nation, or religion, and definitely won’t get into politics. I will instead call for a critical change in our thinking. As long as we do not take care of our fellow humans in other countries, something in our values is missing.