Carolyn Cooper: “Is Jamaica Ready for Grace Jones?”


[Many thanks to Annie Paul for sharing this item.] The Jamaica Gleaner published a great article by Carolyn Cooper today (January 28, 2018), which asks “Is Jamaica Ready for Grace Jones?” Jones is in Jamaica right now for the premiere of the documentary film, Grace Jones: Bloodlight and Bami. Here are a few excerpts (you must not miss the full article):

Jamaica’s superstar model, actress, singer and songwriter is here for the local premiere of the documentary film, Grace Jones: Bloodlight and Bami. I’m tempted to say cloth instead of light. Spectacularly irreverent, Jones provokes the kind of response that can only be expressed with a big, phat Jamaican ‘bad’ word.

Bloodlight is the red light that comes on when a recording is being made in studio. Bami is the ‘prapa-prapa’ spelling of bammy. The subtitle of the film evokes two aspects of Jones’ life: her performance as a spellbinding recording artiste and the simple pleasures she enjoys as a homegrown Jamaican.

Erotically androgynous, Jones is in complete control of her image. She unveils, and still manages to conceal, her many faces in the brilliant documentary. Directed by Sophie Fiennes, the film splices Jones’ musical performances with intimate footage that reveals the complexity of the pop icon’s fascinating life. [. . .]


The Jamaica premiere of the Grace Jones film is the lead event of the Voice of Woman Festival (VOW) produced by Maureen Bryan, a visionary filmmaker who was born in the UK to Jamaican parents. The festival has been staged in London, New York and Cannes over the last nine years.

VOW has hosted talks by women of distinction such as Germaine Greer; and mounted photographic exhibitions in partnership with Getty Images, The Associated Press, Amnesty International and The New York Times. Maureen Bryan conceived the festival as a forum for “creative disrupters” who inventively engage in imaginative work from a decidedly female perspective.

Following screenings in London and Toronto, the Jamaica premiere of Grace Jones: Bloodlight and Bami took place yesterday in Kingston at Carib 5. Today, the film will be screened again at the Cove Cinema in Ocho Rios at 5 p.m. Following the screening, Ms Jones will engage in conversation with me.

From 10 to 2:40 today, there will be a film festival in Ocho Rios at the Cove Cinema, featuring work by Allison Harris, Toni Blackford, Danielle Russell, Danae Grandison, Michelle Serieux, Gabrielle Blackwood, Amanda Sans Pantling and Makeda Solomon. Activist filmmaker Dr Esther Figueroa will engage in conversation with Laura Facey Cooper, who is featured in the film Paddlin’ Spirit.


Immediately after the film festival, there will be a panel discussion on violence with psychologists Gillian Mason and Veronica Salter and educator Joyce Hewett. At 4 p.m., Queen Ifrica will speak on the issue of violence against women and children. Her heartbreaking song, Daddy Don’t Touch Me There, is an anthem of resistance against the sexual abuse of girls [. . .].

[. . .] So is Jamaica ready for Grace Jones? [. . .]

For full article, see

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