On Thursday February 23, 2023, the National Gallery of Jamaica (NGJ) opened The World Upside Down: Images of Dominican Carnival exhibition, curated by Dagoberto Tejeda, as part of the Semana Dominicana en Jamaica, SDJ 2023 events held by the Embassy of the Dominican Republic in Jamaica. The exhibition consists of photographs showcasing vibrant carnival costumes and characters from the Dominican Republic in a display of their culture, heritage and creativity.
Mrs. Roxanne Bucknor (nee Silent), Senior Director of the NGJ gave a welcome speech for the Dominican Republic’s Ambassador to Jamaica, Her Excellency Angie Martinez who delivered the exhibition’s opening remarks.
As a part of the formalities of the public opening, the keynote speech was delivered by the Ministry of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport Permanent Secretary Mr. Denzil Thorpe, on behalf of Minister the Hon. Olivia Grange.
Mr. Thorpe also accepted two portrait posters of the Minister as gifts, on her behalf. The posters were designed by co-founder of the International Reggae Contest, Maria Papaefstathiou and the contest’s current first place winner Vasilis Grivas of Greece. Remarks were also given by Dr. Carolyn Cooper and the Senior Director of the NGJ Mrs. Roxanne Bucknor (nee Silent), as well as by Papaefstathiou and Grivas.
The exhibition is part of the 2023 Reggae Month activities as well as the ongoing Jamaica 60 celebrations. It will be open to the public until Saturday June 3, 2023.
On Sunday, February 19, 2023 the National Gallery of Jamaica invites the public to the opening ceremony of the 29th Art of Reggae Exhibition, a showcase of the top 100 posters from the 2022 International Reggae Poster Contest (IRPC). The event will feature remarks from Minister of Culture, Gender, Entertainment, and Sport, the Honourable Olivia Grange C.D.,M.P; scholar and writer Professor Carolyn Cooper and graphic designer and co-founder of the IRPC, Maria Papaefstathiou. Doors open from 10:00am to 3:00pm with formalities beginning at 11:30am. This event is free and open to the public, featuring music by DJ Iset Sankofa.
The IRPC was founded in 2011 by graphic designers, the late Michael “Freestylee” Thompson (Jamaica, 1958-2016) and Maria Papaefstathiou. The continual aim of the contest has been to highlight Reggae’s phenomenal and widespread impact across the globe. The 29th Art of Reggae Exhibition was previously hosted by the Gallery in 2012 and 2018.
The theme for the 2022 IRPC was “Women in Reggae Music”, with entrants submitting graphic designs highlighting the many roles of women in the Jamaican music industry, including songwriting, singing, deejaying, producing, artist management and entertainment journalism. The entrants were also encouraged to honour the women who had powerful roles such as freedom fighters, cultural activists and nurturers which have been popular references in Jamaican music. The winner of the 2022 IRPC is Vasilis Grivas from Greece. An illustrator of children’s and adults’ books, he has worked with many publishers and illustrated more than a 100 books and covers, in Greece and abroad.
The public is also invited to attend a discussion entitled “Mek Wi Talk: Reggae, Women and Poster Art”, a discussion between Maria Papaefstathiou, Vasilis Grivas and NGJ Chief Curator O’Neil Lawrence, to be held on Tuesday, February 21, 2023, at 1:30 pm.
The 29th Art of Reggae Exhibition is a contribution to the 2023 Reggae Month activities and the ongoing Jamaica 60 celebrations. It is scheduled to remain on view at the National Gallery of Jamaica, until June 3, 2023.
GRAND FINALE: On Friday, October 28, 2022, the National Gallery of Jamaica will complete the Kingsotn Biennial 2022: Pressure film screening series with short film “Out of Many” by Rebecca Williams and feature-length documentary, “Four Days in May” by Junior Wedderburn & Deborah Thomas.
Join us for Part IV of the Kingston Biennial 2022: Pressure film screening series curated by Filmmaker Storm Saulter on Friday, October 28, 2022 at 6:00 p.m.
The screening will be followed by a discussion with the filmmakers moderated by Isis Semaj-Hall. See you at the AC Hotel Kingston.
Friday, October 14, 2022 NGJ’s Senior Director, Roxanne Silent, Chief Curator, O’Neil Lawrence & Senior Curator, Monique Barnett of National Gallery of Jamaica welcomed and provided a guided tour of the Kingston Biennial 2022: Pressure exhibition to His Imperial Highness, Prince Ermias Sahle Selassie.
Along for the tour were The Honourable Olivia Grange, C.D., M.P. and members of His Imperial Highness’ delegation.