Monday, August 18, 2014

Trajectories: 70 Years of Art at MF&G

View of the 2nd wall, Notecards to You, installation, 2014
I was invited to exhibit work in the recent show at Myers, Fletcher & Gordon by curator Nicole Smythe-Johnson in May. The show was sheduled for June but was moved to a July opening date. This didn't leave me alot of time to make work but I wanted to show something different than I normally do in exhibitions in Jamaica. One of the main things about the videos I normally make is that it relies heavily on drawing and painting. The drawings are normally masked by the upfrontness of the software and other multimedia elements I use to create my videos. The result is that over the years I have amassed a decent amount of works on paper. So for this show I collected a few of the larger drawings and also revisited a series of  drawings I did in 2012 for a still unpublished artists book I was working on with three other artists. These are images that help me think through ideas before I get to the stage of making a video and often they influence the imagery in the videos.

View of the 1st wall,  Notecards to You, installation, 2014
 One of the works I made in particular that seemed to come together well was an installation of notecards printed with the images from the artists book and addressed to the viewer and then pinned to the wall. The text inside the cards comes from a letter I wrote to myself about a certain period in time in my life. I then split the text up across the cards so that the letter was a little bit more abstract and that anyone could take away something from each card. The intimacy of the work was one that I enjoyed. There is more about the show here. The curator paired my work with Seya Parboosingh's paintings which for me was a great chance to interact with paintings I have admired for some time.

Saturday, June 28, 2014

'A Natural History' Screens at PĂ©rez Art Museum Miami

Production still from A Natural History 5 Sequence 2, 2014
As a part of the Perez Art Museum Miami's recent film programme, 'At the Crossroads: Critical Film and Video from the Caribbean', my most recent video will be screened. They are running a month-long programme of 5 screenings. Each screening shows a film/video work which has more of a contemporary art- lean accompanied by a feature-length Caribbean-centric film.

This work marks the last in the series. 'A Natural History' really originated and was fuelled by my life in Japan. It was a series of visual images contemplating what my identity was as it shifted meanings between the Caribbean and East Asia. The work also responded to the lovely yet somehow lonely landscapes of Kyoto, where I spent 5 years. Materials used in the making of the video such as Japan-bought pencil crayons, sumi ink and brushes allowed me to think about the content of this work. The act of making several digital and traditional media drawings over and over also re-enforced this. 

Having fully returned to my island home of Jamaica for about eight months now, other influences have begun to creep into my work....other stories... other places. 'A Natural History 5 Sequence 2' really marks the end of that particular narrative in my work. It is fitting, as while creating it I felt I really could say what I wanted to say when I began the first video back in 2010. Interest in the concepts of Primitivism and Intuitive Art have also been important in its making. 

Find out more about the screening of this work and others here

Sunday, January 12, 2014

The Selfie Drawing Project

Visit the project page here
The constantly expanding new album of selfie drawings
It has been a while since updating my work on this site. Many things have happened. I have finished my doctoral course, returned to once again live and work in Jamaica and launched a creative collaboration.  Most importantly however, my perspectives and attitudes towards contemporary art have shifted. This coupled with the five years I had exposed to new approaches to creativity and experiences while living in Kyoto, Japan. These changes are also a result of having to think about art theory and its mechanics so closely during my course. There is a reason that artists are for the most part not theorists. I have come to understand that creative practice and the study of it are two completely different ends of different animals. Thinking about art in such abstract and non-practical terms has left me with the need to make things simple again. This is where The Selfie Drawing Project began.

I unintentionally began by doing a drawing of myself instead of submitting a photo for a portrait for a show in Jamaica last summer. I liked the outcome so I posted it as my Facebook portrait. The image got several positive comments and so I invited others to send photos for me to draw from for free. A steady stream has since been coming in. The project gives me a chance to rediscover drawing and share something with people that is just a plain and easy image. I also enjoy the so-called 'selfie revolution' in 2013 and the personalities that come out in the photos. The drawings are not strictly from selfies but it allows me to draw something that someone else thinks is good and that I can reinterpret and share with them. Undoubtedly this is not the end result of the drawings but this is for future development. For now I am once again enjoying the challenge and simplicity of a brush, pen and ink or a stylus teamed with the steady diary-like routine of drawing faces.

To join the project please send me a selfie to my inbox on Facebook with a request to participate and then we can take it from there. Visit the album on Facebook.

Monday, December 10, 2012

National Biennial 2012

Production still from A Natural History 4

New video in process from A Natural History series to be exhibited at the National Gallery of Jamaica's 2012 National Biennial.  The Biennial runs from now until the end of March. This work is being developed as my post-grad thesis project.

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Representing Color: Upcoming Show

Preparing for upcoming show at Pratt Utica's Munson Williams Proctor Arts Institute opening on March 2nd. The show is a dialogue between myself and fellow Caribbean artist, Sandra Stephens. Sandra will engage with one of my works (Tiny Struggles form the In the Night Garden series) and I have chosen one of her works (Snow White Remixed) to appropriate. We will also create a collaborative piece on location.

I will be showing a new series of sumi ink and digital drawings loosely influenced by botanical illustrations and outsider art. Three videos from the new body of work, titled A Natural History, will also be exhibited.