The CATAPULT team is pleased to announce the Caribbean-based artists selected from across the English, Spanish, French, and Dutch-speaking territories who will participate in the CATAPULT Stay Home Artist Residency (SHAR) and Lockdown Virtual Salon (LVS) programmes!
Between the announcement of the Open Calls on August 5 and the submission deadline on August 21, 2020, these two CATAPULT initiatives received more than 260 entries from 28 countries across the Caribbean. All proposals were reviewed by the Fresh Milk Team (Founding Director, Annalee Davis, and Communications and Operations Manager, Katherine Kennedy, both practicing multidisciplinary visual artists) and an independent regional jury comprised of:
- Edward Bowen (Trinidad & Tobago), Visual Artist and Educator – LVS;
- Giscard Bouchotte (Haiti), Curatorial Director, Nuit Blanche and Social Entrepreneur – SHAR;
- Loretta Collins Klobah (Puerto Rico) Poet and Professor of Caribbean Literature and Creative Writing at the University of Puerto Rico – LVS;
- Sara Hermann (Dominican Republic), Chief Curator & Specialist of Visual Arts, Centro León in Santiago, and founder of Curando Caribe – SHAR;
- David Knight Jr. (US Virgin Islands), Co-Founding Editor of the arts & literary journal Moko – SHAR;
- Clara Reyes (Sint Maarten), Head of Department of Culture within the Ministry of Education, Culture, Youth – SHAR.
Candidates were assessed based on their artist statement, CV, portfolio, and a proposal outlining their preliminary concept of artistic or research activities pertaining to one or more of the programmes’ critical themes of culture, human rights, gender, LGBTQIA+, and climate justice.
Each of the 32 LVS candidates will participate in a one-hour live conversation with a co-discussant about their practice and will receive a $500 USD stipend. The 24 SHAR candidates will be supported to safely remain in their studios/work-spaces and will receive a $3,000 USD stipend to produce work over a two-month period. The two programmes will run on a staggered basis from September 21 through December 11, 2020.
The submissions demonstrated a very wide variety of approaches to making or producing, and the applicants work across a diverse array of media, including dance, installation, music, painting, drawing, mixed media, textiles, animation, book arts, graphic novels, performance, theatre, film, research-based practices, sculptures, photography, literature, poetry, public engagement, and activism. The proposals demonstrate the quality and competence of the work currently being produced by Caribbean cultural practitioners.
The jury also recognised the relevance of the proposals to this particularly challenging time we are facing, as well as the expertise and dedication of the applicants who clearly articulated the devastating effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on this vulnerable sector, demonstrating the “ability to rise above [adversity] and share their human stories.” (Clara Reyes, CATAPULT jury member). Discussions during the jury convenings also took into consideration points such as the impact of support to artists at different stages of their careers and the nurturing of practices at pivotal moments, and commitment to and investment in the region as evidenced through the subject matter of their work, the consistent contribution to their local spaces, or pushing the boundaries, definitions, and trajectories of what is seen as possible for Caribbean artists.
The jury is humbled by the vast amount of talent, drive, strong voices, and art practices present within the Caribbean and appreciated the time each applicant took to submit their application. Every effort was made to be thorough and fair throughout the process, and while reaching the decision was extremely difficult, the jury is confident that the final selection demonstrates a breadth of practices, ideas, and themes put forward by creatives who are based in the four linguistic territories, originating from Aruba, Barbados, The Bahamas, Dominica, Dominican Republic, Grenada, Guadeloupe, Guyana, Haiti, Jamaica, Martinique, Puerto Rico, Saba, Sint Maarten, Suriname, Trinidad & Tobago, and the US Virgin Islands.
The CATAPULT team will be sharing news of these programmes in the coming months. See below for the complete list of CATAPULT SHAR and LVS selected candidates.
CATAPULT | A Caribbean Arts Grant is a COVID-19 relief programme conceptualised by Kingston Creative (Jamaica) and Fresh Milk (Barbados) and funded by the American Friends of Jamaica | The AFJ (USA). Designed as a capacity building initiative it will directly provide financial support to over 1,000 Caribbean artists, cultural practitioners and creative entrepreneurs impacted by the pandemic and working in the themes of culture, human rights, gender, LGBTQIA+, and climate justice.
About the Partners:
American Friends of Jamaica | The AFJ has a near 40 year history of funding charitable organizations in Jamaica in the fields of Education, Healthcare and Economic Development. A registered 501 c 3 nonprofit headquartered in New York City, AFJ relies on individual and corporate contributions made by donors who believe in our work and will advocate on our behalf. Part of the AFJ’s mission is to facilitate donor directed contributions which enables donors to support registered charitable organizations aligned with their own goals for philanthropy.
Kingston Creative is a registered non-profit organization founded in February 2017. Its mission is to enable creatives to succeed so that they can create economic and social value, gain access to global markets and have a positive impact on their community.
Fresh Milk is an organisation whose aim is to nurture, empower and connect Caribbean artists, raise regional awareness about contemporary arts and provide global opportunities for growth, excellence and success. Fresh Milk supports excellence in the visual arts through residencies and programmes that provide Caribbean artists with opportunities for development and foster a thriving art community.