Florida Folklife Program
Folk Heritage Awards Recipient: Almann Ulysse
Almann Ulysse - 2007 Florida Folk Heritage Award
Almann Ulysse is a master of Haitian cut-metal sculpture known as fè koupé. He was born in 1945 in Croix-des-Bouquets, Haiti, birthplace of the fè koupé tradition. He creates all his works from recycled oil and chemical drums using modest hand tools: ball peen hammers, a few chisels, and two or three punches. His works employ a variety of graceful, striking images. Inspired by nature, he fashions birds, fish, animals, trees, and stars; from the Bible, Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden; and from Haitian folk culture, the beautiful marine spirit Lasirèn, fishermen, and other maritime themes. His artwork is highly regarded by Florida's Haitian community as a valued expression of cultural identity. Art collectors and scholars recognize his creations as the finest fè koupé made in the state. Ulysse has sustained this tradition in Florida by serving for three years as a master artist in the Florida Folklife Apprenticeship Program.