Art In Jamaica
Artistic expression has long been a part of Jamaican culture, as is
often the case in societies that have endured the sort of social, political
and economic inequality that leads to social unrest and struggle. There
are many talented artists and several important art collections and
exhibits to be enjoyed in Jamaica.
One of the finest art exhibits in Jamaica can be found at the National
Gallery in Kingston. The work of some of the most important sculptors
in the country can be found here. Among the most magnificent are the
some of the works, including Ghetto Mother, by Edna Manley and the beautiful,
mahogany creations of the esteemed Mallica Reynolds, who usually goes
by the name Kapo.
Just a few miles outside of Ocho Rios, on Route A3, is the Harmony Hall
Art Gallery, open every day from 10am to 6pm. Once a sugar plantation,
this gallery draws both tourists and locals to view an astounding array
of local arts and handcrafts.
Here, art enthusiasts will be able to enjoy displays that include a
broad range of artistic expression, ranging from the traditional fine
arts to the more immediate, urgent feel of urban style street arts.
It offers a unique and fascinating opportunity for the exploration of
the intermingled cultures of Jamaica and its and peoples. There is a
gift store on site, featuring the finest of local arts and crafts, and
a café that is open Tuesday through Sunday, from 10am to 2:30pm and
from 6pm to 11pm.
At The Frame Centre Gallery, in Kingston, Jamaica, at 10 Tangerine Place,
there are more than 300 works available for viewing. These are spread
through three separate areas. The founder of this fine gallery, Guy
McIntosh, is well known for his strong support and extensive knowledge
of the arts in Jamaica.
Also in Kingston is the Mutual Life Gallery, at 2 Oxford Road. The tone
and atmosphere are influenced by Gilou Bauer, and successfully captures
the diverse and multicultural aspects of art currents in Jamaica. This
gallery features both the works of established artists and those who
are – as of yet – unknown. It includes a fine mix of artistic styles
and perspectives. With a blend of exhibits, some being long term and
others changing monthly, visitors are able to enjoy a variety of fascinating
Throughout the island, there are many beautiful works of art tucked
away in numerous small museums, demonstrating the influences of the
various cultural and social movements of the people of Jamaica through
the years. A complicated history, one built upon cycles of oppression
and triumph, of joy and sorrow, wealth and poverty, influences the culture
of Jamaica, and thus the artistic expression of its peoples. Those interested
in the arts should take the time to explore the smaller museums, the
ones that are not typical tourist fare, viewing the many small masterpieces
that the casual tourist is sure to miss. The best way to find these
hidden treasures is by word of mouth, by asking around locally.
For those who enjoy seeing the expression of a culture represented in
the arts, Jamaica offers a wealth of unique experiences. A tour of the
art museums and galleries of Jamaica is sure to be a satisfying and
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