Paint! The Inaugural Art Connections Intl. Residency Exhibition

The exhibition opened at the University of the West Indies, and it was a great turnout.  Visitors responded very positively to the work, and were excited to hear of an opportunity like this happening in Barbados.  Everyone was anxious to hear how the experience went, and learn about our individual processes. 

It was very rewarding to finally see the completed exhibition come together after all of the challenges we faced, and the tight deadline.  It was great to hear of all of the feedback from the supporters at the opening. 

Nicholas Grimes

Alicia Alleyne

Alicia Alleyne, Joshua Peressotti, Nicholas Grimes

Nicholas Grimes

Daniel Glassford, Tonya Wiles, Jessica Massard

Jessica Massard, Alicia Alleyne, Joshua Peressotti

Jessica Massard

Jessica Massard

Joshua Peressotti

Tonya Wiles

Daniel Glassford

Installing the show

We were very lucky to have someone as talented as Therese Hadchity on the Art Connections committee, not only because she arranged so many fantastic outings and meetings, but because she is a very talented curator.  All of the works produced by the six participants were so diverse, but Therese was able to figure out a great way to organize the show.
  It was a long night installing the show, and especially challenging for the Canadians as we are used to being able to put screws and nails directly into the wall to hang work.  We learned an entirely new way of hanging work on fishing line.  

The show is installed at the EBCCI Gallery, at the University of the West Indies.  

Meeting Ras Akyem Ramsey

We were very lucky to have the opportunity to go meet Ras Akyem Ramsey at his home.  He had just returned from a print making excursion, where he made several different series of prints.  It was evident why he has acquired the nick name “art animal” as his home is filled with paintings, drawings, sculptures, catalogues, and awards.  Ras Akyem is a truly prolific and passionate artist. 
We left his home and went to see his new studio space, and he told us of his plans to have it operate not only as his private studio space, but also as a Gallery and a place to hold art events.
Ras Akyem has had a very long and productive career, and spoke about his challenges of having to choose between food and paint. It is inspiring how passionate he is about art. 

Getting close...

Long hours are being put in as the exhibition date approaches.  For the Canadians, we have all faced new challenges with the humidity and climate effecting our materials.  Dry times are drastically different, and our paints/mediums are not behaving as we are used to.  New approaches are being used in order to compensate for these challenges.

Everyone is working hard to complete their work:

Daniel hanging plastic sheeting to begin the final stage of his process: wet sanding

Photographer Mark King photographs Daniel's wet sanding process

Alicia work in progress

Layers of ink and glitter are built up to complete Alicia's work

Layers drying for Jessica's "dig" paintings.  The humidity is interfering with dry times, so the paintings are placed in air conditioning.


Daniel wet sanding

One of Joshua's paintings in the air conditioning, trying to dry for the next layer..

Jessica's Dig painting being carved

Tonya in her studio

Daniel wet sanding

Finding Art Supplies...

 One major difference between Canada and Barbados for artists would be the availability of supplies.  Because everything in Barbados is imported you cannot rely on the item you are looking for being there, just because it was there a week prior.  The art supplies are limited and very expensive.  This would be a huge challenge to overcome as an artist.  We are used to having access to a full spectrum of supplies, and in large quantities.  It was interesting to experience how challenging it can be to locate art supplies. 

Below: The Art Hub- a local art shop run out of the home/a neighbouring shed of the shop owner, Tracy. 

Visiting the graduating students at Barbados Community College

We went to speak to the graduating students at the Barbados Community College Fine Art Program.  We discusses our experience of being in art school, where we went to complete our degrees, our experience at Fanshawe College versus other institutions, what we have been up to since graduating, and our plans for the future.  It was surprising to the students that we too face a lot of challenges breaking into the art world.  It was nice to be able to relate to one another’s experiences.  We discussed some of the differences between the Canadian and Barbadian art scenes that we have noticed in our time here, and they found it a bit shocking that we felt there was a lot more public interest in art in Barbados, than in Canada.  We went to several art openings while we were in Barbados, and were impressed with the enthusiasm and turn out at these events.
After we finished talking, a lot of the students wanted to share their work with us.  They all spoke very passionately about their ideas and work.  It was great to see what they have been working on and hear about their plans for the future.

Visiting the Studio of Annalee Davis

We had the opportunity to go visit the studio of Annalee Davis in St. George.
Annalee is a very prolific Barbadian artist, who creates paintings, drawings, prints, installations, builds objects, writes, and works with video.   Annalee is currently working on several projects, and allowed us the opportunity to see the various things she has been up to.  She showed us her video project Public Beach Access in which she documents the act of measuring the public beach access points along a seven mile stretch of the West Coast.  It was a very interesting project, and definitely eye-opening as all beaches are supposed to be public in Barbados, however, the lucrative and highly developed West Coast leaves little access for the public. 

In her studio/store at Walker’s Dairy, we were able to see Manipura, a line of Caribbean inspired art d├ęcor projects such as painted furniture and objects made by Annalee.  She uses this line to support her socially conscious work.

Annalee Davis is a very well spoken, approachable artist and it was very interesting to see the many projects she is currently working on.  Along with balancing an active art practice, Annalee teaches at the Barbados Community College and invited us to come speak to a group of students who will be graduating at the end of the semester. 

Annalee Davis' Studio