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Oneika Russell

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I am exhibiting a portfolio of 5 new prints from 'A Natural History' at a group exhibition in Martinique. The show features contemporary Caribbean artists, is curated by Dominique Brebion and goes from October 29 to December 5. An excerpt of the press release prepared by the curator is below:

[Vous êtes ici (1) / You are here / Usted está aqui / Cé ici-là minm ou yé/Bo ta aki
The Creole language says ici-là (“here-there”) doubtless to extend the forces of “here” towards the infinite. It often instists on ici-là minm, (“right here there”), nowhere else but here which is nevertheless over there or up there (whence the Creole language gets là minm, “right there” meaning “right now, immediately”) as if to make a clean break between “here” and its near or far surroundings. (2 ) How do the artists of the Caribbean perceive this “nowhere else” which is theirs, but which remains an exotic and faraway “over there” whose location is vague to all but the natives? During my successive visits to the United Kingdom, my friends ran through lists of innumerable exotic islands in an effort to remember where I lived, but all they could recall was that it was a tropical island somewhere, which they wouldn't be able to find on a map. For those who come from these tropical islands, who live in these islands in the sun (4), Paradise has a different face: The burden of the context, the burden of history, burden of the place of origin. It’s tiresome to repeat it, all the more so because it’s true, but it is the burden of being born in a small outlying region where one’s personal sensitivity is hemmed in on all sides by ideologies, national myths, stereotypes, by all the complex expectations generated by what it means to be an artist from the Caribbean living in the Caribbean. 
(5) Christopher Cozier’s drawings in the series Tropical Nights, variations on the theme of being from and in the Caribbean, communicate his perception in the manner of a personal diary with images, daily notes, stream of consciousness. What world do these images suggest? A disconcerting island? A sinister island? A funny island? The works gathered for this exhibition entitled Vous êtes ici [you are here] are all the expression of a critical view.]