Press Release: NGJ Presents Kingston Biennial 2022: Pressure

Kingston, Jamaica (June 13, 2022): –

From Sunday, June 26, 2022 to Saturday, December 31, 2022, the National Gallery of Jamaica presents Kingston Biennial 2022: Pressure, in association with the Ministry of Culture, Gender, Entertainment & Sport. The exhibit will feature artworks by 24 local and diaspora artists.

The Biennial exhibition will form part of the Jamaica 60th Diamond Jubilee and is a celebration of the Jamaican idiom, “pressure,” and the positive and negative ways in which it has shaped Jamaican society.
“From daily living, relationships and even in sporting events, pressure is at the heart of what ultimately makes Jamaicans a notable force in so many global arenas. As we emerge from a global pandemic, it will be interesting for gallery attendees to see how the psychological and emotional pressures of lockdowns and restrictions have and will continue to shape artistic representations, throughout this year’s Biennial and for years to come.” O’Neil Lawrence, Co-Curator, Pressure.

More details about the exhibition:
Kingston Biennial 2022: Pressure, Sunday, June 26, 2022 to Saturday, December 31, 2022

  • Grand Opening – Sunday, June 26, 2022 | 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.
    • Event Entry Type: Open to Public
    • Mask-Wearing: Mandatory
    • Maximum venue capacities will apply
    • All official government health & safety protocols will be enforced.
  • Featured Local & Diaspora Artists:
    • Hurvin Anderson
    • Greg Bailey
    • Simon Benjamin
    • Alicia Brown
    • Camille Chedda
    • Robin Clare
    • Katrina Coombs
    • Kaleb D’Aguilar
    • Ricardo Edwards
    • Laura Facey
    • Monique Gilpin
    • Nadine Natalie Hall
    • Satch Hoyt
    • Christopher Irons
    • Marlon James
    • Leasho Johnson
    • Matthew McCarthy
    • Omari Ra
    • Oneika Russell
    • Arthur Simms
    • Roberta Stoddart
    • Phillip Thomas
    • Jasmine Thomas-Girvan
    • Nari Ward
  • Event Associates & Sponsors
    • Ministry of Culture, Gender, Entertainment & Sport.
    • CHASE Fund
    • Embassy of the People’s Republic of China in Jamaica
    • Tourism Enhancement Fund
    • Grace Kennedy Group
    • AC Hotel Kingston – Official Hotel Partner
    • Berger Paints Jamaica Ltd.

A division of the Institute of Jamaica
An Agency of the Ministry of Culture, Gender, Entertainment & Sport
The National Gallery of Jamaica (NGJ) located at 12 Ocean Boulevard, Downtown, Kingston is the largest and oldest public art museum in the English-speaking Caribbean. A division of the Institute of Jamaica (Ministry of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport), it currently operates from two locations in the capital city Kingston and Montego Bay. The custodian of Jamaica’s National Art Collection, its holdings boast a comprehensive aggregation of early, modern, and contemporary Jamaican works of art, as well as artwork produced by other Caribbean and international artists. Since its establishment, the museum has continually advanced its public offerings, which include active exhibition and engaging education programming, Gift and Coffee Shops, as well as Facilities Rental offerings. Its developments and success have reflected its mission: “To collect, research, document and preserve Jamaican, other related Caribbean art and related material to promote our artistic heritage for the benefit of future and present generations.”



New Dates for Kingston Biennial – Pressure

The National Gallery of Jamaica (NGJ) wishes to announce a new opening date for the Kingston Biennial: Pressure curated by David Scott, Nicole Smythe-Johnson, Wayne Modest and O’Neil Lawrence. The Kingston Biennial will now open on June 26th 2022 and close on December 31st 2022.  

As it has with art institutions around the world, the COVID-19 pandemic has significantly impacted the NGJ’s exhibition programming. It has made it impossible to meet previously set timelines – both for the NGJ as well as several of the participating artists in the Kingston Biennial. While the preparations for the exhibition are ongoing, the recently confirmed presence of the Delta and Mu variants of the COVID-19 virus in Jamaica also factored into the decision to change the opening date from the original December 12, 2021. 

Jonathan Greenland, Senior Director of the NGJ, in a statement. “With the evolving uncertainties of the pandemic, the decision was made to change dates for the exhibition in order to prioritize the safety of our staff, the artistic community and our public. The Kingston Biennial: Pressure is however our newest flagship exhibition; we remain committed to this exhibition for its potential to be a catalyst for the further exposure and development of Jamaican art both here and in the Jamaican diaspora.” 

David Scott, the exhibition’s lead curator on the exhibition’s theme “[W]hat is instructive about the Jamaican experience and the idiom of pressure is that it has always had a generative and dissenting quality about it. Pressure is a source of critical and creative counter-powers and creative oppositional activity. It is an inspiring human resource, and historically it has been deeply fertile ground for some of the most brilliant works of Jamaican cultural achievement.” 

Leading up to the opening of the Kingston Biennial: Pressure there will be several interactive online seminars including: The Cultural History of Art Institutions in Jamaica and the Sonic and Visual Lives of Pressure among others.

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