Annalee Davis Uses Art to Unearth and Interrogate


Jacqueline Bishop writes about Annalee Davis’ background and artwork, with particular attention to the artist’s most recent exhibition now on view at The Idea Lab, at The Warfield Center, at The University of Texas-Austin entitled “The Ground Beneath My Feet—A Chorus of Bush in Rab Lands.” In this exhibition, says Bishop, “the artist uses drawings, ledgers and historical artifacts to try and transform how a particularly painful site may become a more nurturing place.” See full article at The Huffington Post. Here are excerpts:

For Annalee Davis, the land, especially the island of Barbados, is often a baseline issue in her work; as are issues of race, class and gender. This might be so because she was born into a large white creole family of five children on a sugar cane estate in Barbados.

[. . .] For the past two years, Annalee, who now lives on a property that used to be a plantation and has been in her family for the last 100 years, has been walking in the fields and collecting shards she finds on this land for an apothecary and bush tea service as a push back on history.

“When the sugar industry was on its last legs and a lot of the fields were abandoned,” Annalee shared with me, “medicinal plants started coming up among the sugar canes that were now abandoned. I like to think how these medicinal plants completely ignored the rules of segregation initially imposed upon them, and, for me, these plants represent the robust traditions specific to the black Barbadian experience that have been passed down and thankfully preserved for generations.” [. . .]

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