A report by Debra Greaves for Trinidad’s Newsday.
Twenty seventeen, the current exhibition by Beverley Fitzwilliam Harries at 101 Art Gallery, was created in acrylics and inspired by TT’s landscapes and people.
The artist says TT and the Caribbean are her muse and she could not picture life anywhere else. Armed with her colouring books and craft kits in her growing years, she was constantly seeking ways to explore her creativity.
“Art was in my blood, as my extended family were creatives and my parents always supported my decision to pursue art. As a small child, I always found myself colouring on whatever I could find, including the wrapping papers of sweets,” Fitzwilliam Harries recalls.
Her alma mater Holy Name Convent was instrumental in moulding her into an artist. Her parents also supported her passion, and she went on to major in painting at Fanshawe College of Applied Arts and Technology, Ontario, Canada.
The former art teacher at Bishop Anstey High School found that teaching and trying to create art had it challenges. She taught for 19 years and due to family commitments migrated to Jamaica for three years and St Lucia for seven years.
The turning point in her career came when she attended a few workshops in Barbados facilitated by Margaret Roseman (of Canada) and Heidi Burger (of Germany). She soon made the transition from watercolours to acrylic and launched her first solo show in 2006 with the encouragement of The Inner Gallery owner St Rachael DuBoulay. “Prior to this, I always participated in group exhibits with other artists,” Fitzwilliam Harries said.
She encourages all artistes across different genres to pursue their art for the right reasons and always stay committed to learning. “You need workshops – no matter how old or experienced you are. You need to step out of your box and refresh yourself to learn new techniques etc,” she said.
The exhibition ends tomorrow at the gallery on 84 Woodford Street, Newtown, Port-of-Spain.