First Look

National Gallery to present new roots: 10 Emerging Artists

National Gallery of Jamaica | 2013-07-22 00:00:00

The National Gallery of Jamaica (NGJ) is pleased to invite you to its summer show, New Roots: 10 Emerging Artists on Sunday, July 28th at 1 p.m.  The exhibition features work by Deborah Anzinger, Varun Baker, Camille Chedda, Gisele Gardner, The Girl and the Magpie, Matthew McCarthy, Olivia McGilchrist, Astro Saulter, Nile Saulter and Ikem Smith.

“In keeping with our mandate to identify and support new and young artists, the National Gallery is excited to unveil a show that will surprise, challenge and hearten the arts community and broader society,” said Dr. Veerle Poupeye, Executive Director of NGJ.

Though some of these artists already have an exhibition history, locally or abroad, all are relatively new to the local art world, and are under the age of 40 years. The exhibition is designed to identify and encourage new directions in the Jamaican art world. It features art in both conventional and new media – painting in various media and on various surfaces, digital photography, video and animation, jewellery – and a variety of genres and styles, from the documentary to the fantastic.

There are no deliberate themes in the exhibition but the title New Roots was chosen, with some ironic intent, to signal how the works reflect the current cultural moment – “a moment of undeniable crisis, globally and locally, in which the older, postcolonial search for cultural affirmation (and “roots”) has been replaced by a new willingness to acknowledge and embrace uncertainty and instability, at the personal and the collective level,” described Nicole Smythe – Johnson, senior curator at NGJ.  

Notably, the exhibition also reflects a new willingness on the part of the artists to intervene actively in the social environment, in a way that reflects genuine social responsibility, empathy and respect for others, and a sense of humour.

New Roots is a team curated exhibition, led by Executive Director, Dr. Veerle Poupeye; Senior Curator, Nicole Smythe-Johnson and Assistant Curator, O'Neil Lawrence.

The opening ceremony, commencing at 1p.m., will be a part of our Last Sundays programme and will feature a performance by Kat CHR and opening comments by Petrona Morrison, Director of the School of Visual Arts at the Edna Manley College of Visual and Performing Arts.

Doors will open at 11a.m. and the gallery will remain open until 4 p.m. Visitors will be treated with free admission, free tours and children’s activities associated with our Last Sundays programme. We look forward to hosting you and introducing this exciting group of artists.


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