The Explorations IV: Masculinities exhibition will open at the National Gallery of Jamaica on Sunday, December 6, 2015. The exhibition is the fourth edition of the National Gallery’s critically acclaimed Explorations series, which examines major themes and issues in Jamaican art and culture. The guest speaker at the December 6 opening will be Michael Bucknor, Senior Lecturer, Public Orator and Head of the Department of Literatures in English at the University of the West Indies, Mona. Dr Bucknor has written extensively on gender issues in the arts and has also contributed an essay to the exhibition catalogue. Explorations IV: Masculinities will be on view at the National Gallery until March 5, 2016.
Explorations IV: Masculinities explores how masculinities – and the use of the plural is deliberate – have been represented in Jamaican art and visual culture. In doing so, the exhibition also explores how various masculine roles and identities, and the perceptions that surround them, have evolved in the Jamaican context. Organized thematically, the exhibition includes work by artists from the eighteenth century to the present, such as Philip Wickstead, Josiah Wedgwood, Isaac Mendes Belisario, Edna Manley, Alvin Marriott, Albert Huie, Osmond Watson, Barrington Watson, Colin Garland, Rose Murray, Mallica “Kapo” Reynolds, Everald Brown, Omari Ra, Phillip Thomas, Ebony G. Patterson, Leasho Johnson, Wade Rhoden, Peter Dean Rickards, Cosmo Whyte, and Vermon “Howie” Grant. Masculinities is designed to encourage productive and respectful debate on what is, after all, a subject area of major social and cultural urgency in contemporary Jamaica.
At the opening function on Sunday, December 6, doors will be open from 11 am to 4 pm and the opening function will start at 1:30 pm. DJ Biko will provide music. Admission will be free on that day but donations are gratefully accepted. The gift and coffee shop will be open for business, and the gift shop is fully stocked for the Holiday season, with a variety of art reproductions and cards, craft and gift items, and books, including the Explorations IV: Masculinities catalogue. Proceeds from the gift and coffee shop and donations received help to fund programmes and projects such as the Masculinities exhibition.