Caribbean Contemporary Art Exhibition

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Caribbean Contemporary Art Exhibition

Dwyer Cultural Center

Harlem, New York City

October 25 – December 2, 2013

Curator: Anderson M.Pilgrim

  • Special Feature: Panel Discussion “Examining the Caribbean Presence in Harlem”, Saturday, November 23rd, 5pm.

The NY Metropolitan Martin Luther King Jr. Center for Non Violence and the International Communications Association hosted a special reception on October 24, 2013 at the Dwyer Cultural Center, 258 St. Nicholas Avenue at 123rd Street in Harlem, at 6pm, to launch the visual art exhibition, “Contemporary Caribbean Art: Selections from CaFA Fair Barbados.” This exhibition features artwork by 12 artists who have participated in Caribbean Fine Art (CaFA) Fair Barbados over its three annual editions, 2011-2013, as well as artists featured in the colorful film documentary “Plight of the Caribbean Artist”. The exhibition’s special programming over five weeks will include screenings and symposia, which seek to widen the knowledge and insight into the work of contemporary artists born in the Caribbean, or of Caribbean heritage.

One of the highlights of the special reception will be the presentation of the 2013 World Harmony Awards to six distinguished honorees who have made significant contributions to World Harmony, with their dedication to preserving and enhancing Caribbean Culture: Mr. Irving Burgie – composer, songwriter of many of Harry Belafonte’s greatest hits and member of the Songwriter Hall of Fame; Caribbean Tourism Organization (US Director Sylma Brown Bramble) – the leading advocate of tourism growth and development for the region; Dr. Una Clarke – former New York City council member; Dr. Roy E. Hastick – Founder and CEO of Caribbean American Chamber of Commerce & Industry, & Dr. Eda H. Hastick – distinguished educator; Dr. Marta Moreno Vega – Founder and Director of Caribbean Cultural Center-African Diaspora Institute (CCCADI); West Indian American Day Carnival Association (WIADCA- President Thomas Bailey) – producers of the largest Caribbean cultural celebration in the USA. The awards are presented annually by International Communications Inc. This year’s six honorees will join a distinguished list of past recipients including Ruby Dee, renowned actress & cultural icon; Sherrill Kazan, President of the World Council of Peoples for the United Nations; and Very Rev. James Parks Morton, distinguished humanitarian and founder of the Interfaith Center of New York.

CaFA Fair Barbados is the Caribbean’s only Fine Art Fair, highlighting visual artists representing the Dutch, English, French and Spanish Caribbean. The 4th Annual Fair is scheduled for March 12-16, 2014 in Bridgetown, Barbados. “Plight of the Caribbean Artist” is a film documentary produced and directed in the United States by Guyanese American Earl Holder.

Two of our featured artists, Haitian painter Patricia Brintle and Barbadian painter Carlton Murrell who participated in CaFA Fair Barbados were also featured in the film. Other featured artists include Guyanese painter Carl F. Anderson, Trinidad & Tobago’s multi-talented David Boothman, Puerto Rico’s Minerva Diaz, Trinidad & Tobago’s Glen Martin, Barbadian painter & actor Na La, USVI born Ademola Olugebefola, Jamaican artist Ava Tomlinson, and Barbadian sculptor Alfred Weekes. These artists have all been participants in CaFA Fair Barbados. Others included in the film and exhibit are Montserrat native Lennox Warner and Dominican painter David Wilson.

In a salute to Caribbean American Heritage month, June 2013, President Barack Obama stated recently, “Through every chapter of our nation’s history, Caribbean Americans have made our country stronger – reshaping our politics and reignited our arts, spurring our movements, and answering the call to serve. Caribbean traditions have enriched our own, and woven new threads into our cultural fabric….” Many of the luminaries, who are associated with those accomplishments; names such as Marcus Garvey, Harry Belafonte, Sidney Poitier, Cicely Tyson, Colin Powell, Kareem Abdul Jabbar, Graciela Perez, Tito Puente, and others, were shaped in the great neighborhood of Harlem, as early immigrants or 1st generation Caribbean Americans. Furthermore NY City is said to have the largest concentration of Caribbean citizens outside the region while the most recent US census counts over 11 million Americans of Caribbean ancestry across all language groups.

The exhibition will be open to the public on Wednesdays, 5-8pm, and Sundays, 4-7 pm. There will be a screening of the documentary film “Plight of the Caribbean Artist” followed by a discussion with the Director and participating artists, Saturday, November 2, 6-9pm. A panel discussion, “Examining the Caribbean Presence in Harlem” is scheduled for Saturday, November 23, 5-7pm. Please visit for updates and information.

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