J'can art gallery director leads int'l cultural exchange

J'can art gallery director leads int'l cultural exchange

Monday, March 19, 2012

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KINGSTON'S Edna Manley College of the Visual and Performing Arts, The CAG{e} Gallery, will host an International Cultural Exchange (ICE) here in association with Diaspora Vibe Cultural Arts Incubator (DVCAI) of Miami, Florida.

Supported in part by Miami-Dade County Department of Cultural Affairs, the five-day event beginning March 29 will feature artists from diverse backgrounds, working in various media and exploring the concept of 'cultural Diaspora', intellectually and creatively.

On her second visit to Jamaica, DVCAI founder, curator, and director Rosie Gordon-Wallace hopes to build lasting connections with the island's vibrant art community.

"It's about relationships. you have to go back to the countries more than once so that the seeds that have been planted can mature through the lives of the artists. So, when you graduate from an incubation process, you don't graduate only with scholarship, you graduate with relationships, and that is what I value the most, " said Gordon-Wallace.

Through workshops, chat sessions, studio visits, and cross cultural dialogue centering around Caribbean identity, the exchange will serve as a forum for artists speaking with artists about issues confronting their professional and artistic development now and in the future. The 20 visiting artists and arts professionals from North and South America, and the Caribbean will share their own experiences, techniques, and scholarship with local Edna Manley students.

Key components of this exchange will be an exhibition, studio/gallery visits, artists' talks, intellectual property protection and licensing presentation, documentation, museum curatorial participation, and career development sessions for artists. It will address all genres of artworks in discussions, multimedia installations, video, sculpture, print making, photography, ceramics, painting and performance — aiming to dispel the impression that art from this region is limited to folk styles and traditions.

Artists will speak with artists about hyphenated existence, the challenges encountered while producing artwork in the Diaspora, border communities, creating and documenting generational memory, and documenting the process in Kingston, Jamaica, side by side with Jamaican contemporary and student artists.

"Edna Manley has embraced the project, both intellectually and practically, so what we will all come away with is the broadening of our Diasporic relationships", Gordon-Wallace remarked.

"This arts and cultural exchange demonstrates that artistic expression transcends borders. Being Jamaican-born and raised, I am proud to curate this nationally recognised programme and return to the land of my birth. We are looking forward to the homecoming and providing a platform for the artists to interact and showcase their work," she added.

The accompanying exhibition "Living Sculpture II" will showcase work from the visiting artists as well as feature Nicole Wynter, Jamaican ceramic artist, and is scheduled to open at The CAG(e) Gallery, Edna Manley College, Friday, March 30, 2012 at 7:00 pm. There will aso be free all-day workshops on Saturday, March 31 from 9:00 am to 4:00 pm.

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