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Charles Martin | Brooklyn, United States

On the way to the J’ouvert promenade

J’ouvert is a post-midnight, costumed procession that leads into Brooklyn’s later day Caribbean Carnival – perhaps the city’s largest event, reportedly drawing up to 3 million people. Also called “West Indian” Day Parade – the term coined by Europeans upon their first arrival to this continent – it is organized by the Caribbean community for Labor Day—the first Monday of September—while the temperature in New York is still hot, instead of the usual calendar, February or March before Lent that would be the dead of often freezing winter.  J’ouvert’s origins are said to be in the carnival of Trinidad and Tobago. Spoken in English as “jouvay,” the word comes from the French “jour ouvert,” opening of the day. Many who take part in J’ouvert take no more than a pause and continue seamlessly into the larger daylight parade that's ushered in.

Making Carnival's photographs are in homes and Mas Camps: social gatherings, well in advance, where designs are shown and orders are taken.

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