Photography Exhibition: Sinaya Wolfert’s “Religions”

Photographer Sinaya Wolfert’s exhibition “Religions” opened its doors last Thursday, February 10, and will be on display until March 2, 2011, at the Central Bank of Curaçao and St. Maarten, located at 1 Simón Bolivar Square in Willemstad, Curaçao.

The grand marble hall of the Central Bank of Curaçao displays “extraordinary photos: the ‘harvest festival’ with the corn king, inside a mosque, the lighting of candles during a Sabbath dinner in a Jewish family, and at a Holy Communion a girl bends her head. All these photos were taken in Curaçao. Wolfert became inspired by the diversity and tolerance of the island. 

The photographer says, “I live partly in Netherlands and partly in Curaçao. In the Netherlands, you have a lot of conflict between religions. Islam is always portrayed very negatively. Curaçao embraces them all and we never fight one another. I find that really exciting and I wished to exhibit this.”

Wolfert’s [background] is part Surinamese and part Yu’i Kòrsou [from Curaçao]. Her fifth book, Curaçao, Religion, Rituals & Traditions was completed at the end of 2009. The photographs in the exhibition are a selection of over two hundred photographs: colorful documentations of religious events in Curaçao. 

Her way of working seems quite simple: do research first and then go by instinct. She familiarizes herself with events or traditions, speaks  to different people, and seeks contact with the subjects of her photoos. Often this is achieved through her father, who has access to a large social network in Curaçao. [. . .] “The nice thing about this kind of project is that I get to know Curaçao in an entirely different way. You get to go places you otherwise would never visit. It makes it very personal and alive,” says Wolfert.

The exhibition has already been shown the Netherlands and this is the last time that the photographs will be publicly displayed. Although the photographs were not taken for this purpose, they are for sale at the exhibition.

Her book is also available in Curaçao bookstores or through; also see previous post New Book: Curaçao, Religions, Rituals & Traditions.

For full review (in Dutch), see

See more of Wolfert’s work at

3 thoughts on “Photography Exhibition: Sinaya Wolfert’s “Religions”

  1. Ivette, I don’t speak Dutch but it seems that the exhibit is being held at the “Centrale Bank van Curaçao en Sint Maarten,” and not in Willemstad. I could be wrong but at any rate it does not appear that it will be held in St. Martin (“French” side) but in Sint Maarten (“Dutch” side). Minor clarification, unless I was going to attend! Looks to be an interesting exhibit, need to get this book! Thanks for the post, was not familiar with this photographer!!!! Love your posts.
    Abrazos, David

  2. Gracias, David:
    As they say, “haste makes waste.” I have corrected the post. It was supposed to read “Central Bank of Curaçao AND St Maarten” (that’s the full name of the bank.) It is located in Willemstad, Curaçao. Thanks for the correction and the supportive comments!
    Saludos, Ivette

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