Holly Bynoe on Caribbean Linked III: “Generosity and the practice of art making”

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In this inspiring piece—“Generosity and the practice of art making”—Holly Bynoe (ARC Magazine) reports on Caribbean Linked III, a regional residency program and exhibition held in Aruba, organized by Ateliers ’89, The Fresh Milk Art Platform, and ARC Magazine. [See previous posts Caribbean Linked III, Aruba, Art Exhibition: CARIBBEAN LINKED III, and Artist Residency and Exhibition: CARIBBEAN LINKED II.] Here are just a few excerpts—I highly recommend reading the full report through the link below. Bynoe writes:

[. . .] In 2012, I was invited to Aruba to have a series of meetings over the course of a week with fellow art activists, curators and educators Elvis López, Annalee Davis, John Cox, Rocio Aranda Alvarado and Paco Barragan. During the initial stages of the programme, we spoke about working towards an encounter that would transform and/or combat rampant issues of mobility that we face in the region.

Scanning that memory, I think I remember the heat more than anything else, and the general infatuation that everyone must experience with one of the most fluid and dynamic languages on Earth, Papiamento. [. . .]

In 2013, and I am not quite sure how we managed, but Caribbean Linked – the residency and exhibition component – was launched, and the core directors LópezDavis and myself squeezed blood out of bone to make it happen. We hustled for funds, Skyped for endless hours to make this meeting manifest. I must admit that I was taken aback by the intensity of it and the way it engendered a kind of Caribbeanness that I very rarely feel. I dont feel it at conferences, nor at most exhibitions or art fairs or at talks. These things don’t give me shivers, they don’t send my mind racing into a panic or an understanding that I have found something real. These moments are undoubtedly few and far between.

[. . .] This active gift of generosity – not only through the practice of making art – but the constructed ecosystem around Caribbean Linked, is very new for me. It functions like a healthy space; one focused on developing a language to inform our identities and one that is critical of narrative disjuncture.

[. . .] Caribbean Linked as a Think Tank: An active collective of contemporary artists are used as a creative think tank to assess the needs of the visual art industries within their locales. As someone who is paying attention to the small growth, there is a built in assumption that this group will give testament to concerns around cultural/educational development, collaboration, innovation and exchange. I am specifically interested in how technology is affecting our sensibilities and the creation of work and how this will continue to manifest with the ubiquity of social media and advancing technologies, lending to experimentation and play with New Medias.

Caribbean Linked as a window to the future: If there is embedded value, then to who and what more can be done to ensure that our target demographic is widened and that programming can bring out more awareness and cultural change?

These questions have pervaded the space I work in, and are the root of most of the programming that is being developed and supported through my practice. The understanding of the need to have care, engagement, passion and healthy practices spill over into our everyday lives, will affect the future placement of art from the Caribbean and other geographies, and developing industries that share these affinities.

Holly Bynoe is a Vincentian visual artist and writer based in the Caribbean. She is the co-founder and editor-in-chief of ARC Magazine, and a graduate of Bard College International Center of Photography (2010) where she earned her M.F.A. in Advanced Photographic Studies. Her work has been shown regionally and internationally, and has been featured in numerous publications.

For full article, see http://arcthemagazine.com/arc/2015/08/generosity-and-the-practice-of-art-making/

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