A symposium at the University of Essex, 6-7 May 2011
For centuries the Caribbean has both attracted and produced artists who have represented the lineaments of its landscapes and cultures. Agostino Brunias, Paul Gauguin, Winslow Homer, Chris Ofili, and Peter Doig are among many who have visited and painted. Others born in the region, such as Camille Pissarro and Frank Bowling have remained haunted by their childhood memories. Yet others have returned again and again to paint the places and spaces of their islands: Isaac Belisario, Wifredo Lam, Michel-Jean Cazabon, Aubrey Williams, Gesner Armand, Pétion Savain, John Dunkley … And the tradition remains vibrant, as for example in the map-based works of Rafael Ferrer, José Bedia, and Ibrahim Miranda.
Derek Walcott, the St Lucian nobel laureate, has always been a keen painter of his island and an astute interpreter in his poetry of other painters. St Lucian painters such as Dunstan St Omer and Llewellyn Xavier are among the most distinguished in the region. So, in association with his time at Essex as Professor of Poetry, the AHRC-funded American Tropics project, along with the University of Essex Collection of Latin American Art and the Centre for Latin American and Caribbean Studies, is organising a two-day symposium called Painting the Caribbean. In keeping with the place-based approach of the American Tropics project, this symposium will focus on how the places of the Caribbean have been represented—its landscapes, its cities, its light, its sea.
Featured speakers will include Caribbeanists and art historians Lisa Paravisini (Vassar) and Judith Bettelheim (UCLA).
Offers of papers (title and short synopsis) should be sent to Peter Hulme [firstname.lastname@example.org] by 15 January 2011.