connecticut in color

Middletown-Based Artist Aims to Inspire, Unite With His Art

NBC Universal, Inc.

Art has the power to warm the heart, to send a message and to unite community.

Pierre Sylvain is a Haitian-born, Middletown-based artist aiming to do all of those things. Some of his newest works are part of an effort to brighten up Main Street.

“I try to capture the vibe of this town. It’s artistic and people love music there.
I see so many people smiling, how much they love it. I said I feel I’ve done my little part,” said Sylvain.

Sylvain is the painter behind the three panels now adorning the old Shlien’s Furniture Company store. He’s the first commissioned artist in an effort by the Downtown Business District to bring beauty to vacant Main Street businesses and foster a sense of community in the pandemic.

The panels capture the music, people and feeling of the neighborhood.

The native of Les Cayes, Haiti has made life his muse. His home studio overflows with art in every medium - from paintings to stained glass works to mosaics.

“What’s really great about art is the fact you never get bored,” said Sylvain.

His mosaic series highlights great leaders from around the world, including Nelson Mandela, Harriet Tubman, Congressman John Lewis, and Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg.

“I have a daughter so I just want to tell her that woman, she was a fighter,” said Sylvain.

From Martin Luther King to the great Haitian liberator Toussaint Louverture, he’s created the likenesses of leaders and chronicled the #MeToo movement, Black Lives Matter and reflected on the horrors of the middle passage.

Sylvain is also the gallery director of the Charter Oak Cultural Center. He says that through his art he finds a sense of freedom and hopes more people in Connecticut will explore their own creative expression and add a little more beauty to the world we all share.

“Art has the power to make you smile, art can change your life if you give it a chance.”

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