London Group member Charlotte C Mortensson has curated an exhibition of contemporary Jamaican art for De Queeste Art gallery in Belgium.
Jamaican Intuitive Art
Charlotte C Mortensson LG has curated an exhibition of contemporary Jamaican art for De Queeste Art gallery in Belgium. Her film, From Spanish Town to Swift River, which looks at the social and historical significance of this work, will be screened during the show.
From Spanish Town to Swift River
De Queeste Art
Sunday 10 November to Sunday 8 December 2019
The exhibition looks at how ancestral memories of Africa, slavery, colonialism and – more recently – America’s political influence, have informed the work of the 6 exhibiting artists.
The show represents an important branch of contemporary Jamaican art which connects to Africa rather than following Western art traditions. Classified as Intuitive by the late Dr David Boxer of the National Gallery of Jamaica, the term carries deep sociological as well as artistic significance. The ongoing legacy of colonialism meant that, up until the late 1970s, only Western-style art had been considered worthy of consideration by the vast majority of Jamaica’s art establishment.
The show’s title refers to the contrasting geographical backdrops of two of the artists – Christopher Harris and Kingsley Thomas – as well as to the many startling contradictions in present-day Jamaica. Once the capital city of Jamaica, Spanish Town’s imposing colonial architecture and its infrastructure are crumbling. It is also home to two of the island’s most notorious gangs. Many miles away, Swift River is a small, rural community which, below it’s idyllic tropical appearance, resonates with stifling gossip and intrigue.
From Spanish Town to Swift River is a continuation of 5 Jamaican Intuitive Artists at the Highgate Literary & Scientific Institution in 2017 and Open Up Your Eyes & Look Within – treasures from the National Gallery of Jamaica, hosted by the Jamaican High Commission in London in 2018, both of which were curated by Charlotte C Mortensson.