The National Exhibition 9 "The Fruit and the Seed" will open on Thursday, December 13th, 2018 an run through March 31st, 2019. A socially curious project, “The Fruit and the Seed” centres around how artists are working to define their space and experiences. Whether it be through the lens of race, gender, parity and class as a way to clarify cultural, social and aesthetic decisions, the art-making process is used as a tool to bring to the fore ideologies on activism and advocacy, leading to a more empathetic and understanding culture.
The Fifth National Exhibition asked participating artists to respond to environmental tra
"In the past, artists were invited to submit three pieces from their portfolio that had been produced in the past two years. This time they were asked to produce one piece in response to the theme with the objective of raising a social consciousness within our community," David A. Bailey, Acting Director of the NAGB during 2010 says, "It is the intention of the NAGB to explore this area from an artist's perspective seeing how they use their own unique artistic tools and vision to produce works that look at areas such as urbanisation, mobility (cars, planes, boats, etc.), domesticity, personal space, landscape, industrialisation, natural earth elements, fabricated non-natural elements, etc. that relate to carbon footprint and climate change."- Holly Parotti
“The NAGB’s Fifth National Exhibition asks “What is Your Carbon Footprint?”
These are just a few examples of the Earth reacting to the burdens and demands we manufacture and place on it. These events are ALL related one way or another to various forms of global climate change. It has been obvious that the planet has been showing us that we should strive to live in harmonious rhythm with nature. Should we choose to ignore the effects of our actions, we will have to accept the potential dire penalties.
Because of these and other global events, the National Art Gallery of The Bahamas resolved that for the first time in the Gallery’s existence, its Fifth National Exhibition (also known as “The NE5”) would be a themed exhibition exploring ideas and narratives on issues relating to the 21st century global question of our carbon footprint and climate change. Professional artists of The Bahamas, residing here and abroad, were invited to create work which responded to the theme “The Carbon Footprint: Bahamian Artists’ 21st Century Response to the Environment.”
In keeping with the idea of reducing the Gallery’s own carbon footprint, the NAGB chose to forego commercially printing and mailing its Invitations to the Opening Reception but opted for the paperless route and digitally emailed invitations to its guest list.
Further to this, in another innovative move, the Gallery also decided to not produce a printed catalogue as in years past, but instead created a “digital” catalogue in the form of a specially designed and produced Jump Drive which features images of all the artwork, video interviews of and information on the participating artists. The NE5 digital catalogue will be available for purchase in the Gallery Store, Mixed Media.
Additionally, Holly A. Parotti, Curator of the NE5, and Assistant Curator, Jackson Petit, researched films that were included in the submission process to motivate those interested in submitting work and also to support a more cohesive conversation in the community.
Attendance to these films was compulsory but in no way meant to dictate how the artist would interpret or react to the theme. The two films, Remembering Saro-Wiwa and Home, were profound and exceptionally moving.Remembering Saro-Wiwa is a monument to the activist Ken Saro-Wiwa who was executed because of his campaign against the annihilation caused by the depletion and rape of the Niger Delta by certain oil companies. Yann Arthus-Bertrand’s Home was also presented because of its beautiful aerial cinematography that documented the threat humanity imposes on the planet.
With the NAGB’s vision to further catapult Bahamian art into the international arena, the Gallery invited two world renowned artists, Janine Antoni and Alfredo Jaar, along with Director of Gasworks UK, Alessio Antoniolli, to be a part of the jury that judged the submissions. By doing this, the NAGB hoped to open the conversation to the international contemporary art platform.
This was not an easy challenge but at the NAGB, we feel that with difficult and complex times, it is important that artists are given the opportunity to respond,” said David Bailey.
Participating artists include: John Beadle, Sue Bennett-Williams, DeDe Brown, Apryl Burrows, John Cox, Blue Curry, Claudette Dean, Jan Elliott, Kendra Frorup, Jenny Guy & Michael Guy John B. Gynell, Ken Heslop, Kristaan Ingraham, Susan Moir-Mackay, Kishan Munroe, Lavar , Lynn Parotti, Dylan Rapillard, Heino Schmid, K Smith, Alisa Streather, Natasha Turnquest, Eleanor Mae Whitely
Featuring the work of thirty-one professional Bahamian artists, The Fourth National Exhibition officially opened on Tuesday, July 8, 2008. A thoughtful set of proposals was submitted for the NE4 competition. At the end of the selection process, 51 works produced by 31 artists were chosen. The artwork was diverse and included paintings, sculptures, installations, prints, mixed-media works and photography. Perhaps most significant was the number of female artists who participated - approximately 50 percent of the artists were women.
Dr. Erica James in the NE4 catalogue: “While the work in the 2008 National Exhibition confronts the viewer in substantial ways, the desire is not to distance the audience from the art, but to engage it. The audience is being asked to release themselves to the possibilities of the images, objects, and installations, their boldness, their forthrightness, their willingness to engage the totality of what it means to be Bahamian, unmasked. Through these works of art, the exhibiting artists express a belief in the power of a national artistic practice that is rooted, complex, global and unbound.”
Participating artists include:
John Beadle, Sue Bennett-Willaims, Chantal E. Y. Bethel, Lillian Blades, John Cox, Blue Curry, Claudette Dean, Marie Jeanne Dupuch, Ritchie Eyma, Kendra Frorup,Walter Gobin, John Branton Gynell, Kendal Hanna, Andret John, Sue Katz-Lightbourn, Thierry Lamare, Toby Lunn, Susan Moir-Mackay, Paulette A. N. Mortimer, Samantha Moree, Lavar Munroe, Holly Parotti, Jackson Petit, Tamara Russell, Heino Schmid, Noella Smith, Willicey Tynes, Imogne Walkine, Alfred Williams
In 2006, for the Third National Exhibition, almost 200 pieces were submitted for review. After assessing the strength of each one, the NAGB’s curatorial team and the NE3 curator, Krista Thompson, decided on 35 pieces representing the work of 23 artists for inclusion in the show. Unlike previous years, many socially provocative pieces were submitted and selected and a fair number of sculptural and or installations were also included. The show also differed by the notable presence of contemporary works.
Dr. Erica James in the NE3 catalogue: “This year’s National Exhibition is remarkably different in form and character than previous exhibitions. It is much smaller, but the range of media is much broader. Relatively few paintings are included, but far more sculpture, installation and conceptual pieces were submitted and selected than ever before. The group includes many well-known artists, but almost half are participating in their first National Exhibition.”
The Second National Exhibition was held in 2004. It was decided that the biennial National Exhibition should feature the best of Bahamian art produced within the past two years. Though 141 proposals were submitted, only 56 interdisciplinary works were selected. It was unthemed and featured traditional Bahamian art themes, processes and media. It also presented works by artists who had appropriated non-traditional processes. Abstract works were a strong area with Kendal Hanna’s “Inner Light” (2000) and “Portrait of Vincent D’Aguilar 2” (2000).
From NE2 Catalogue Foreword by Gail Saunders:
“Works in the exhibition represent a broad range of Bahamian art styles including abstract works, photography, three dimensional objects and ceramics. The social commentary central to, and embodied in, the work of a number of artists is encouraging and shows signs of maturity.”
Participating artists include:
Vivien Archer, John Beadle, Dionne Benjamin Smith, Jason Bennett, Sue Bennett Williams, Chantal Bethel, Stan Burnside, Jessica Colebrooke, John cox, Blue Curry, Claudette Dean, Roshanne Eyma, Nicole Ferguson,Tyrone Ferguson, Kendal Hanna, Cathy Hayes, Andret John, Susan Katz-Lightbourn, Thierry Lamar, Toby Lunn, Joan Marquis, Edward Minnis, Dereck Paul, Livingston Pratt, Malcolm Rae, Antonius Roberts, Tamara Russell, Sheldon Saint, Heino Schmid , Clive Stuart, Maxwell Taylor, Davinia Whitlock, Itlalia Williams
Inaugural National Exhibition (INE) 2003
In March 2003, a call for works was sent out inviting Bahamian artists, residing at home and abroad, to submit three pieces created during or after 1973 for a juried inaugural exhibition. More than 270 works were submitted from more than 130 artists. Seventy three works were chosen for inclusion in the show by a seven-member panel of judges. As a result, the INE featured some of the most exciting art produced in The Bahamas over the past 30 years.
Foreword from INE catalogue (by Dr. Gail Saunders):
“The Inaugural National Exhibition is of particular significance for The Bahamas as it brings together the best of Bahamian art created since our independence in 1973. Indeed, it is in keeping with the Mission of the National Art Gallery of the Bahamas which is to ‘collect, preserve, document and promote a National Collection of art for the benefit and education of Bahamians and the wider international audience’. This exhibition supports the artistic community by extending its audiences, and by helping to define its standards and practices. Bahamians can be proud [of the] Inaugural National Exhibition and all [to follow].”
Participating Artists Include:
Janine Antoni, John Beadle, Dionne Benjamin-Smith, Jason Bennett, Sue Bennett-Williams, Chantal Bethel, Lillian Blades, Wellington Bridgewater, Jackson Burnside, Stanley Burnside, Arlington Capron, Richard Peter Cooper, John Cox, Claudette Dean, Ellery Deveaux Jr. , Michael Edwards, Eric Ellis, David Ernest, Ritchie Eyma, Amos Ferguson, Nicole Ferguson (nee Minnis), Tyrone Ferguson, Kendal Hanna, Kathy Hayes, Marlon Hunt, JESSICA (nee Maycock), Susan Katz-Lightbourn, Thierry Lamare, Alton Lowe, Toby Lunn, R. Brent Malone, Tony "Exuma The Obeah Man" McKay, Eddie Minnis, John Paul, Joyce Petrina, Chan Pratt, Livingstone Pratt Malcolm Rae, Antonius Roberts, Angelo Roker, James Rolle, Roland Rose, Nadine Seymour-Monroe, Sheldon Saint, Dave Smith, Jan-Yves Smith, Jolyon Smith, Kim Smith, Nora Smith, Clive Stuart, Dorman Stubbs, Maxwell Taylor, Allan P. Wallace, Nancy Young