Vodou (Voodoo) in Ottawa


On our recent trip to Ottawa we visited the Canadian Museum of Civilization where they had a temporary exhibit of Haitian Vodou objects (also spelt Voodoo).  The idea of the exhibition was to dispel myths often portrayed by Hollywood that the religion is all about sticking pins in dolls.

Vodouists do use dolls and human remains in their practices however, they have a positive association because they represent their ancestors. They believe when ancestors are close by, the living can communicate with them and benefit from their help and experience.  Vodouists often believe they are being possessed by Lwa (Haitian spirits) or they call on Lwa to help them out of a particular imbalance caused by illness or a trauma for example.




Regardless of the intention of the exhibition I found it really quite disturbing, there was an unsettling vibe in the room that made me shudder and unfortunately my shaky hand lead to some blurry photos!


If you are in Ottawa, take a look and see what you think but whatever you do leave the little ones behind for this particular exhibit!

9 thoughts on “Vodou (Voodoo) in Ottawa

  1. Mum

    Lou, that looks seriously frightening, you are so perceptive ( you could be called a witch like your Mum). Don’t suppose they had a diy manual did they? There are few people that I would like to stick pins in….

  2. Dean

    OOh, looks spooky indeed! I went to a voodoo museum in Benin, West Africa in 2007. It was also freaky and to be honest, didn’t really enjoy it. in our little village, we also have a Witchcraft Museum, haven’t visited yet. I should really. Stopping over from #WhatsTheStory.

  3. Charly Dove

    Wowsers that looks so spooky Lou, fascinating though too! The dolls look really creepy but I guess that’s the intention. I can totally see why you found it disturbing. What an interesting post though, thank you for sharing 🙂 #whatsthestory

  4. Molly @ The Move to America

    I think I would have found it disturbing too, but very interesting, especially if it goes to explain more about it all so I would have a better understanding of it all. I have never been keen on dummies and the like, so this would be quite overwhelming at first. I would feel like I was being watched.

    Great post though – really good to read and look at the pictures!

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