By Stephen Weir
Attention Jamaica, a group of Caribbean Canadian art experts is about to put the spotlight on art and artists from Jamaica and other Caribbean nations. A 3-day exhibition and sale of local art beginning January 30th will take place in Mandeville Jamaica.
The fair is being spearheaded by well-known founder of the Black Artists Network Dialogue and CArt’s Creative Director Karen Carter. She describes the upcoming CArt Festival as a contemporary art fair connecting artists from the Caribbean region to the international art world.
“CArt is an opportunity for fair goers to meaningfully connect with local artists, and acquire original art to add to their art collection,” Karen Carter told the Camera. It will take place at the Mandeville Hotel in Mandeville. This is the first installment of CArt which will be a biennial Art Fair.
The weekend is meant for Jamaicans and visitors alike. It provides space where artists from Jamaica, Canada and other Caribbean nations can show and sell their work and, to network, network, network. In addition to a show of original art, there are panel discussions featuring local and international academics and curators throughout the 3-day festival.
CArt is being launched to connect local, regional and international artists, dealers, collectors, curators, and academics who are interested in the exploration, promotion, and development of the arts sector across the Caribbean.
“As a Jamaican-Canadian who has been working in the arts and culture sector for over twenty years I am excited to have an opportunity to work with colleagues to help raise the profile of the artists across the Caribbean and cultivate the next generation of art collectors,” says Carter.
“Colleagues from across the diaspora have been witnessing the impact that the West African diaspora’s engagement with arts and culture has had locally. We believe the Caribbean is positioned for its own cultural renaissance; if we begin by connecting professionals from across the diaspora with the region in meaningful ways we can build on the local cultural capital and support emerging artists.”
CArt programming will include a private tour and reception to benefit the restoration of the Rex Nettleford Art collection at the University of the West Indies, Mona. Ralston Milton “Rex” Nettleford, was a Jamaican scholar, social critic, choreographer, and Vice-Chancellor Emeritus of the University.
CArt is organizing panel discussions featuring local and international academics and curators, who will, among other things be addressing relevant issues for the curatorial practice in Jamaica and the Caribbean. Acclaimed filmmaker John Akomfrah’s, feature documentaries, Stuart Hall Project, about the British Jamaican Scholar and Nine Muses, the migration story of Caribbean immigrants in the 1960’s will be screened at the Festival
CArt has a prominent program advisory committee from the region and across the diaspora including; Dr. Julie Crooks, an Assistant Curator and Photographer at the Art Gallery of Ontario in Toronto, Asha Lovelace a Trinidadian Filmmaker and Director of African Film, Trinidad and Tobago, and Mark Sealey MBE British curator, cultural historian, and the Director of Autograph ABP in London to name a few.