Join us for a panel discussion with Laura Facey (winner of the 2010 Aaron Matalon Award), Omari Ra, Margaret McGhie and Phillip Thomas, all artists who are represented in the 2010 Biennial, for a discussion on the use of conventional media and formats in contemporary art.
Free and open to the public.
Note: The 2010 National Biennial will close on March 5. Make sure to see it!
Join us for a discussion with Petrona Morrison, Storm Saulter, Berette Macauley and Shanti Persaud on their photography-based work and the increasingly important role of photography in contemporary art practice.
This will be the first of two panel discussions relevant to the 2010 National Biennial. The second will be held on Tuesday, February 15 and will explore the use of conventional art media and formats in contemporary art.
The Jamaican Intuitive painter Gaston Tabois in 2010 received a Silver Musgrave Medal from the Institute of Jamaica, the NGJ’s parent organization. As has become customary for artists who have been awarded Musgrave medals, the 2010 National Biennial includes a special tribute exhibition of his work. Below is the citation for Gaston Tabois’ Silver Musgrave medal.
Gaston Tabois – Road Menders (1956), Collection: NGJ
The Institute of Jamaica recognizes Gaston Tabois for outstanding merit in the field of Art.
Born in Trout Hall, Clarendon in 1924, Tabois’ early years were spent on his parents small farm in the village of Rock River, a few miles from Chapelton, where as an only child he received the full attention of a doting mother who instilled in him a sense of order, discipline and of pride in completing every set task with a maximum of constructive effort. The late Gloria Escoffery, author of a memorable account of Tabois’ journey as an artist, adds other early lessons from his mother:
Today Tabois has his mother to thank not only for the moral
standards she set for him…, but also for the example of those nimble
fingers as they brought to life the intricate designs she embroidered
on the bridal gowns of Rock River belles (…) without realizing that
he was learning, Tabois came to understand the importance of
planning, of careful craftsmanship, of giving thought to the
materials, or ground on which one worked, the tools and medium
one selects for a particular job.
The Jamaican ceramicist Gene Pearson in 2010 received a Silver Musgrave Medal from the Institute of Jamaica, the NGJ’s parent organization. As has become customary for artists who have been awarded Musgrave medals, the 2010 National Biennial includes a special tribute exhibition of his work. Below is the citation for Gene Pearson’s Silver Musgrave medal.
Installation view - Gene Pearson exhibition in 2010 National Biennial
The Institute of Jamaica recognizes Gene Pearson, O.D., for outstanding merit in the field of Art.
Ceramicist and sculptor Gene Hendricks Pearson was born in 1946 in St. Catherine, Jamaica. He attended the Jamaica School of Art; now the Edna College of the Visual and Performing Arts, where he studied under Jamaica’s Master Potter Cecil Baugh and was one of the School’s first graduates with a diploma in ceramics in 1965. He subsequently taught at the Jamaica School of Art, for some eighteen years, and has also taught ceramics at the Calabar and Vere Technical High schools. At present, he works exclusively as a studio artist and divides his time between Jamaica and California. A keen cultural entrepreneur, he recently opened a gallery in New Kingston – the Gene Pearson Gallery – where he sells his ceramic and sculptural work.
The NGJ is pleased to announce that Laura Facey has been awarded the 2010 Aaron Matalon Award for her installation Plumb Line in the 2010 National Biennial.
The National Gallery of Jamaica will participate in Christmas in the City on Wednesday, December 15.
To mark the occasion, we will extend our opening hours to 10 pm, which will give members of the public additional time to view our permanent exhibitions and the 2010 National Biennial, Jamaica’s premier national art exhibition which runs from December 12 to March 5. The National Biennial offers a cross section of recent developments in Jamaican art, from the conventional to the experimental, and by well known and new artists.
On December 12, the National Gallery of Jamaica will open the 2010 National Biennial, the fifth edition since the biennial was established in 2002. The National Biennial is the successor of a long tradition of national exhibitions in Jamaica, which dates from 1938, when the first All Island Exhibition of Art and Craft was held at St George’s Hall in Kingston. This exhibition was a private initiative by members of the nationalist intelligentsia. The Institute of Jamaica took over the baton in 1940, when it began to stage its annual All-Island Exhibitions. In 1968 the Institute of Jamaica also established the annual Self-Taught Artists exhibition, which ran concurrent with the older exhibition for several years, but featured work by amateur and self-taught artists, while the All Island Exhibition became the domain of the professional artists. The two exhibitions were merged into a single exhibition, the Annual National Exhibition when the National Gallery, which started operations in 1974, took over responsibility for the major annual art exhibitions that had previously been staged by its parent organization, the Institute of Jamaica. The Annual National Exhibition was held annually from 1977 to 2001 and is thus the immediate precursor of the National Biennial.
The decision to move from annual to biennial in 2002 was motivated by a number of factors but two stand out: we wished to give participating artists more time in between these national exhibitions to produce significant work suitable for an exhibition of this caliber and we also needed to make space in our programmes for exhibitions that provide much-needed alternate perspectives on Jamaican art and a greater diversity of curatorial perspectives, such as the guest-curated Curator’s Eye series and the Young Talent series, which features the work of some of Jamaica’s most promising young artists. Continue reading