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Participants:

  • Tobias Ostrander (PAMM)
  • Katherine Kennedy (Fresh Milk and ARC)
  • Marsha Pearce (ARC)
  • Natalie Urquhart (NGCI)
  • Elvis López (Ateliers ’89)
  • Llanor Alleyne (Visual artist)
  • Max Slaven (David Dale Gallery)

Overview:

The Clinic 2 session started by reviewing some of the conference’s key themes: connectivity and the need to formalize creative networks within the region; the current challenges faced by artists and institutions practicing within the region in terms of finance, mobility, visibility and space; and the need to inform dialogue about Caribbean art from within the region.


Discussions ensued around the following topics:

  • The potential for pooling resources and sharing networks.
  • Centralizing advocacy efforts.
  • Presenting our purpose in terms that can be understood regionally and internationally.
  • Addressing barriers to connectivity — whether this be policy at a governmental level, logistical in terms of movement, both geographical and linguistic, and funding — across multiple regional platforms.
  • Supporting local and regional production and visibly feeding into the international scene on our own terms, negating the need for external validation.
  • The logistics of travelling Caribbean shows effectively and with limited budgets and varying customs/import policies.
  • The need of simultaneously nurturing international interest in the region while growing local audiences.
  • Making significant contributions to documentation, research and scholarship, as well as serving as an educational tool for the community, which was considered a central mandate of most participating organizations.
  • Imagining what a Caribbean future might look like (Marsha Pearce’s Caribbean Futurism concept).
     

The group agreed that there was a need for a more formal Caribbean art network (and that Tilting Axis could act such a platform) but also felt that pre-existing platforms such as ARC could be better utilised and supported via advertising/content etc.

The discussion moved on to a regional project and explored what format this may take – community programming/education/travelling exhibition. Marsha Pearce presented her current research project Caribbean Futurism (research, publication, mobile exhibition), inspired by Afrofuturism, which focuses less on historical constraints and present limitations within the region, and more on a vision of the future. The group all agreed that this was a strong theme for a collaborative, multi-island/multi-genre project that could develop over (three) years.

Project: Re-titled Caribbean Futures the premise of the project will explore the theme of futurism within each participating country/island, initially as individual projects. These projects would be connected via marketing and (potentially) artist exchanges and workshops etc and would be scheduled simultaneously. Selected works from each island exhibition would then form a larger, singular, Caribbean Futures exhibition that would travel internationally.

Summary:

  • Increase collaborative research, scholarship, travel and access to the region;
  • Utilize online spaces effectively, particularly supporting pre-existing networks like ARC;
  • Partner non-profits with educational institutions for a multilayered approach to learning & artistic growth;
  • Restructure institutions and policy; look at success stories and see what we can glean as a region;
  • Tailor language in a way that does not exclude or alienate those we are trying to reach.
  • The final and key action point was that Tilting Axis would become a travelling conference hosted by different islands either on an annual or biannual basis, forming a critical platform for networking, dialogue and support.

Natalie Urquhart, Director
National Gallery of the Cayman Islands
Cayman Islands

www.nagb.org.bs

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