Digital, an exhibition of digital art from the Caribbean and beyond, will open at the NGJ on April 24. The exhibition features 39 artists and we will be featuring each of them with a short blog post on the work in the exhibition. Here is our first, on Ewan Atkinson from Barbados.
Ewan Atkinson was born in Barbados, in 1975. He holds a BFA from the Atlanta College of Art and a MA in Cultural Studies from the University of the West Indies, Cave Hill, Barbados. An active figure within the Caribbean art community, Atkinson has participated in prominent international exhibitions, such as the 2015 Havana Biennial, and has coordinated several solo exhibitions and projects, including his current The Neighbourhood Project. He coordinates the BFA programme at the Barbados Community College and serves as the Director/Curator of the Punch Creative Arena in Barbados.
About the Work
Atkinson’s ongoing The Neighbourhood Project develops narratives and experiences within a fictional community that bears uncanny resemblance to the island of Barbados. Atkinson writes: “Using The Neighbourhood as an ‘object of study,’ I explore the production of meaning and the contentious role of the individual within boundaries that might define a community. With references to Caribbean histories and the global cultural influences that have played a part in constructing the contemporary Caribbean experience, I look at how identities are ‘imaged’ or ‘imagined.’ The characters and stories I enact are re-imaginings of elements from these influences and resulting lived experience, highlighting life on the fringes of community. The work simultaneously celebrates and humorously reorients these mergers in a dialogue of the disparate, to create a collective, a neighbourhood of hybrids and misfits.” Only in Our Imagination, a series of twelve posters, is the product of a fictional organization, The Neighbourhood Tourism Authority, which advertises The Neighbourhood as a tourist destination, emphasizing that the representations of “paradise” in such images are unattainable.