Jamaica Biennial 2017 – Invited Artists: Els Meyns

Els Meyns – Horn of Plenty (n.d.)

The illustrated mixed media sculpture by Els Meyns is on view at the National Gallery of Jamaica until May 28 as part of the Jamaica Biennial 2017.

Els Meijns born in 1945, in Wormerveer, The Netherlands. She attended the Gooise Academie voor Beeldende Kunsten in Laren and the Brooklyn Museum Art School in New York. She also studied art restoration at the Nacional de Conservación, Restauración y Museología (CENCRM) in Havana, Cuba. Meijns lectured part-time at the Jamaica School of Art and later became a full-time lecturer at the institution. She has actively exhibited in Jamaica, Netherlands and the USA and has executed many sculpture commissions locally. Her abstract and representational sculptures in various media can be found in public and private collections worldwide. She currently lives and works in St Mary, Jamaica.

Jamaica Biennial 2017 – Invited Artists 2017: Jag Mehta

Jag Mehta – Done in India (2015)

Jag Mehta’s work can be seen at the National Gallery of Jamaica in Kingston until May 28, as part of the Jamaica Biennial 2017.

Jag Mehta was born 1933 in Lahore, Pakistan. He was educated at Cornell University, New York (BSc.) and Columbia University, New York (MBA). He also did part-time studies in Ceramics at Loughborough University of Technology, England; the University of Puerto Rico and the Edna Manley College of the Visual and Performing Arts. He has participated in numerous group and solo exhibitions in Jamaica, London and Puerto Rico, and has been a regular exhibitor at the National Gallery of Jamaica. He is best known for his organic yet subtly geometric sculptural forms and vessels. He lives in St Ann, Jamaica.

Jag Mehta – Done in China (2015

Jamaica Biennial 2017 – Invited Artists: Bryan McFarlane

Bryan McFarlane – Dark, Like the Weather (c2016)

The Jamaica Biennial 2017 is almost in its last month as it closes on May 28, and is a must-see exhibition. Here is a short feature on Bryan McFarlane, whose two paintings, which are presented as a diptych, and video can be seen at the National Gallery of Jamaica on the Kingston Waterfront.

Bryan McFarlane – Like the Weather (c2016)

Bryan McFarlane was born in Moore Town, Portland. McFarlane was educated at the Jamaica School of Art and earned a MFA at the Massachusetts College of Art in 1983. He is Professor of Painting and Drawing at the University of Massachusetts, Dartmouth and has previously served as Visiting Professor to a number of institutions including the University of the West Indies and the School of the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston. He is currently working on a three year project with research scientists, jointly with EMMAS and TERC, at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), with a grant from the National Science Foundation. McFarlane has been featured in numerous exhibitions locally and internationally and is well represented in a number of public and private collections. His paintings and mixed media works explore his Maroon heritage, African Diaspora culture and the environmental threats of the Anthropocene. Among his many accolades, McFarlane was awarded a gold medal by the Chinese Government for his entry in the Olympics Fine Arts Exhibition in Beijing in 2008. He was also awarded the Silver Musgrave Medal by the Institute of Jamaica for his contribution to art and art education. Bryan McFarlane lives in the USA and St Andrew, Jamaica.

Website: bryanmcfarlane.net



Jamaica Biennial 2017 – Invited Artists: Franz Marzouca

Franz Marzouca – Canoe Nude Series # 7 (2016)

Franz Marzouca’s work in the Jamaica Biennial 2017 can be seen at the National Gallery of Jamaica in downtown Kingston until May 28.

Franz Marzouca was born in 1959, Kingston, Jamaica. Marzouca studied photography at TASIS, Switzerland and Barry University in Miami. Since 1982 he has been working as a commercial photographer, executing commissions for major clients in the Caribbean and North America. Marzouca has participated in numerous art shows including the Annual National and Biennial exhibitions of the National Gallery of Jamaica as well as the annual Liguanea Art Festivals. Marzouca lives in Kingston, Jamaica.

Website: franzmarzouca.com

Franz Marzouca – Canoe Nude Series # 5 (2016)

Last Sundays, April 30, 2017 – feat. Shashame and the Jamaica Biennial 2017

The National Gallery of Jamaica’s Last Sundays programme for April 30, 2017 will feature the Jamaica Biennial 2017 exhibition and a screening of the film documentary, Shashamane, On the Trail of The Promised Land.

The film explores the narratives of a number of settlers of African-descent from across the world, who have been living in Shashamane – a 200-hectare plot of land in Ethiopia, located 250 km south of Addis Ababa. The land was donated to all blacks in the world by the Emperor of Ethiopia Hailé Selassie in 1950. Ras Mweya Masimba is one of the key characters in the film, he moved to Shashamane in 1990. He is an English-born artist of Jamaican origins who depicts the deeds of his people in his animated films. Today African descendants from around the world — France, Jamaica, the United States, the United Kingdom, and various Caribbean islands – live in Shashamane. All of them were motivated by the desire for self-affirmation, after centuries of humiliation, and a longing to bring up their children in a nurturing context devoid of racism, making of tangible reality of the famous “Exodus” sung by Bob Marley.

The director of Shashamane, On the Trail of The Promised Land, Guilia Amati is an Italian-French filmmaker. She has directed several ads and commercials for corporations, NGOs and International organizations such as the FAO and Caritas International. In 2010 she co-directed, with Stephen Natanson, the feature-length documentary This Is My Land…Hebron, which won more than twenty awards, including the Aljazeera International Documentary Film Festival, the Festival International du Film des Droits de l’Homme de Paris, the Buenos Aires Human Rights Film Festival, and the Italian foreign press association’s Golden Globe Prize. The film also earned a special mention at the Nastri D’Argento, where it was a finalist for the David di Donatello Award and was selected by the Human Rights Watch Film Festival for their festivals in London, New York and Chicago. Shashamane is Amati’s second feature-length film.

Visitors will also be able to view the critically acclaimed Jamaica Biennial 2017 exhibition, which opened with a series of events from February 24 to 26 and continues until May 28 at three locations, the National Gallery of Jamaica itself, Devon House in New Kingston and National Gallery West in Montego Bay. The exhibition features the work of more than 90 artists in a variety of media and styles, including that of six international invitees – David Gumbs, Andrea Chung, Jodie Lyn-Kee-Chow, Raquel Paiewonsky, Marcel Pinas, and Nadia Huggings – and also features two special tributes to noted Jamaican artists — the painter Alexander Cooper and the late photographer and videographer Peter Dean Rickards.

The National Gallery of Jamaica’s doors will be open from 11 am to 4 pm on Sunday, April 30, 2017 and the film will start at 1:30 pm. As is customary for Last Sundays, admission will be free at the National Gallery of Jamaica’s Downtown Kingston location, and there will also be free tours of the exhibition. The Devon House location will also be exceptionally open from 11 am to 4 pm on April 30 and National Gallery West will as usual be open from 9 am to 5 pm. Regular admission rates will apply at both National Gallery West and at Devon House.


Jamaica Biennial 2017 – Invited Artists – Judy Ann MacMillan

Judy Ann MacMillan – Self Portrait Wearing a Crown of Thorns (2016)

The work of Judy Ann MacMillan in the Jamaica Biennial 2017 is on view in the main exhibition at the National Gallery of Jamaica.

Judy Ann MacMillan was born in 1945, St Andrew Jamaica. MacMillan attended the Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art, Dundee (Scotland) where she attained a Diploma of Art. A classical painter, she is best known for her acutely observed portraits, landscapes and still lifes. She is a regular exhibitor both locally and internationally, including the Annual National and Biennial exhibitions at the National Gallery of Jamaica. Her most recent solo exhibition was titled Judy Ann Macmillan, Still Painting, which was held at the French Embassy in Kingston in 2016. Among her achievements, was her induction in the Hall of Fame of the Caribbean Foundation for the Arts, for outstanding contribution in the field of art in 2007. MacMillan lives in Kingston, Jamaica.

Website: www.judyannmacmillan.com

Judy Ann MacMillan – Village Venus (2016)