Omari Ra was born in 1960, in Kingston, Jamaica. Ra (also known as “Afrikan”) studied painting at the Jamaica School of Art (now the Edna Manley School of the Visual Arts) and graduated in 1983. Ra’s work provides provocative, satirical commentaries on the historical and contemporary issues that have shaped the African Diaspora. Currently, the Head of the Painting Department at the Edna Manley College of the Visual and Performing Arts, Ra also holds an MFA from the University of Massachusetts in Dartmouth. He has exhibited widely locally and internationally, participating in exhibitions such as the 1995 Johannesburg Biennial, and the Annual National and Biennial exhibitions in Jamaica. In 2004, he was awarded the Aaron Matalon Award for his entry in the 2004 National Biennial, and in 2011, Omari Ra was awarded the Silver Musgrave Medal by the Institute of Jamaica. He lives in Kingston, Jamaica.