Announcing the CATAPULT Stay Home Artist Residency & Lockdown Virtual Salon Awardees – Jury Report

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 MokoSHAR;
  • 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.

General Comments

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.


About CaTAPULT:

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.

Announcing the Jury for the CATAPULT Stay Home Artist Residency & Lockdown Virtual Salon

We are excited to announce the six jury members who are reviewing the submissions received from Caribbean-based artists across the English, Spanish, French and Dutch speaking territories to be considered for the CATAPULT Stay Home Artist Residency and Lockdown Virtual Salon prorammes!

The invited jury members are Clara Reyes (Sint Maarten), David Knight Jr. (US Virgin Islands), Edward Bowen (Trinidad & Tobago), Giscard Bouchotte (Haiti), Loretta Collins Klobah (Puerto Rico) and Sara Hermann (Dominican Republic).

In collaboration with the Fresh Milk Team, these 6 arts and culture professionals will be selecting 24 artists, creatives or cultural practitioners to be granted an 8-week long Stay Home Artist Residency opportunity, and 32 to take part in one-hour live conversations about their practices for the Lockdown Virtual Salons.

Learn more about the CATAPULT programme and the jury members below!

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About Clara Reyes

Clara E. Reyes, born on Curaçao, and raised on the island of St. Maarten, has always immersed herself in the world of art and culture. Ms. Reyes holds a Master of Fine Arts degree in Dance and Choreography from State University of New York at Brockport, as well as a diploma in Dance Theatre Production from the Edna Manley College for Visual and Performing Arts in Jamaica. She was a former student at the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theatre and Merce Cunningham Dance Studio, and a dance teacher, choreographer and performing artist with Committed Artist in South Africa.

Ms. Reyes’ career includes being head of Department of Creative Artistic Formation at the St. Maarten Academy; part-time lecturer of humanities at the University of St. Maarten; part-time dance instructor at University of Rochester; former teacher at The Charlotte Brookson Academy for the Performance Arts St. Maarten; and co-founder and former director at the National Institute of Arts in St. Maarten. She is the current Head of Department of Culture within the Ministry of Education, Culture, Youth, and Sport of St. Maarten.

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About David Knight Jr.

David Knight Jr. is a writer, editor and curator from the U.S. Virgin Islands. He is a founding editor of the literary journal Moko, which publishes fiction, poetry, essays and visual art that reflect a Caribbean heritage or experience. His writing has appeared in The Caribbean Review of Books, ARC magazine, and Caribbean Beat among other places. Exhibitions he has co-curated include My Islands Do Not Make a Nation in Havana, Cuba and An Ocean of Dignified Dust on St. Thomas. He was the writer in residence at the Caribbean Linked Programme in Aruba in 2016, and in 2017 was invited to give the presentation Strange Dreams in the Afterglow: Contemporary Art in the U.S. Virgin Islands at the University of Copenhagen in Denmark. Along with his wife, Priscilla Hintz Rivera Knight, David is the co-owner and creative director of Bajo El Sol Gallery on St. John.

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About Edward Bowen

Visual artist and educator Edward Bowen (born 1963, Trinidad & Tobago) attended Croydon College of Design and Technology, earning his Higher National Diploma in Fine Art and Printmaking with a Distinction in Painting. Upon his return to Trinidad in 1985, Bowen set up his studio and has been operating as a practicing artist ever since. He has exhibited consistently in both solo and group shows locally at galleries such as Gallery 1234, Aquarella, Horizons, Y Art Gallery and many others, and has taken part in esteemed international exhibitions including Karibische Kunst Heute – Documenta Kassel, Germany; the 1994 Santo Domingo Biennale; and the 25TH Anniversary of the Sao Paulo Biennale. In 1987, he formed the Language of Vision Environment with fellow artist/designer Steve Ouditt, linking with the UWI School of Continuing Studies to host classes in art and design. This initiative lasted for two years, and included other courses taught by local artists. In 2014, Bowen opened Sans Souci Estate Retreat and Guest House, offering artists’ retreats, residency opportunities and studio spaces.

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About Giscard Bouchotte

Giscard Bouchotte, born in Haïti, has been working to build a sustained reflection on the power of chaos through his critical texts, exhibitions and artistic actions. Where politics fail, artistic action serves as a tool generating civic creativity. During the annual “Nuit Blanche” of Port-au-Prince, for which he is the curatorial director, he invites international and local artists to transform the Haitian capital city of Port-au-Prince half-destroyed by the 2010 earthquake into a playground. For the past ten years, he has curated several exhibitions as an independent curator, notably “Haiti Kingdom of the World” (Paris, 2010) which was subsequently transformed into the first Haitian Pavilion at the 51st Venice Biennale (Venice, 2011) in the Fondazione Querini Stampalia. Bouchotte’s other multidisciplinary events include: the traveling exhibition “Périféeriques”, the annual “Nuit Blanche (Sleepless-night) of Port-au-Prince”, and “(In)visibilité Ostentatoire” at the Fondation Clément, Martinique in 2017. His research focusses on the future of traditions, revisited by contemporary artists in the context of globalization.

Photo credit: Julian Salinas

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About Loretta Collins Klobah

Loretta Collins Klobah, an award-winning poet, has co-edited and translated the bilingual anthology of Caribbean woman poets The Sea Needs No Ornament/ El mar no necesita ornamento (2020) and published the poetry collections Ricantations (2018) and The Twelve-Foot Neon Woman (2011) with Peepal Tree Press. She has received a PEN award in Translation, the OCM Bocas Prize in Caribbean Literature in the category of poetry, a Pushcart Prize, and an award from The Academy of American Poets. She lives in San Juan, where she is a professor of Caribbean literature and creative writing at the University of Puerto Rico.

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About Sara Hermann

Sara Hermann (Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic, 1969) earned her BA-MA Art History from University of Havana, Havana, Cuba. (1991). Since 2005, she worked as Specialist of Visual Arts at Centro León in Santiago, Dominican Republic, where she is presently also the Chief Curator. She was Director of the Museo de Arte Moderno of Dominican Republic from 2000-2004, and serves as a member of the International Art Advisory Council of Caribbean Arts Initiative. Hermann is also the founder of Curando Caribe, a programme for pedagogy, contemporary arts and curatorial practice established in 2014. As a curator, she conceptualizes and curates exhibitions of contemporary art by artists working from the Caribbean, Central, Latin America and internationally, and her current research interests include the margins of visual arts (both social and territorial) and the role of education, translation and mediation in the public display of the visual.


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.