Fresh Milk featured in BimROCK

Photograph by Bim ROCK Magazine

Photograph by Bim ROCK Magazine

The premiere issue of BimROCK Magazine is out. Thank you to Kishmar Shepherd, Publisher of BimROCK and Rachelle Grey, Editor-in-Chief for featuring the Fresh Milk  Art Platform Inc. in this, their inaugural issue. Thanks also to Versia Harris, Ronald Williams and Lauren Craig for lending their voices to the feature. See the full feature and magazine here: BimROCK Issue 1.

Click here to read the feature.

Slaying the Mermaid: Women and the Culture of Sacrifice #CCF

To be honest, the book felt personal. I could relate to my grandmother’s and mother’s continued self-sacrifice, but it also didn’t challenge the statement I’m about to share at the start of this essay.
After making the misguided statement that “Men are better leaders than women,” and having to defend myself in a series of debates that followed, I was pressured into reading a book on feminism so I could ‘get my mind right’. So I selected the one that caught my attention—Stephanie Golden’s Slaying the Mermaid: Women and the Culture of Sacrifice…

It may have been the wrong choice.

The above excerpt is from Ronald Williams’ review of Slaying the Mermaid: Women and the Culture of Sacrifice by Stephanie Goldenthis week’s addition to the Fresh Milk Books Tumblr – the online space inviting interaction with our collection in the Colleen Lewis Reading Room.

For new Critical. Creative. Fresh reviews every week, look out for our #CCF Weekly posts and see the great material we have available at Fresh Milk!

Fresh Stops

Fresh Stops

Fresh Milk  is pleased to announce a collaborative partnership with the local initiative Adopt A Stop to bring art into the public space, commissioning six young Barbadian artists to produce original artwork for the benches which will pop up around the island from October 2014. The artists are Evan Avery, Matthew Clarke, Versia Harris, Mark King, Simone Padmore and Ronald Williams. This project is an opportunity to create visibility for the work these emerging creatives are doing, allowing the public to encounter and interact with their pieces in everyday life, generating interest and inviting dialogue about their practices. These six benches are the first edition of, hopefully, many more to come. Stay tuned for more information as these benches come to a stop near you!

About Adopt A Stop:

The Adopt A Stop project provides socially beneficial advertising.in the form of bus shelters, benches and outdoor fitness stations at prime sites around Barbados. They embrace solar lighting, local materials and tropical design in keeping with their goal of environmental sustainability.

About the Artists:

Evan Avery

Evan Avery is a young, Barbadian artist; and a graduate of the Barbados Community College, receiving a Bachelor’s Degree in Fine arts. His primary medium is acrylic paint; working with flat, bright colours, he creates compositions with characters ‘the Miniis’ which he uses to represent himself or others, as well as events in his life. He is now in the process of creating a business around his work, transferring his characters and ideas onto clothing and other objects as a means to share the ‘Miniis’ with people all over the world. From September 2013 – March 2014, Evan’s work was exhibited at Casa Tomada, Sao Paulo, in their public art programme ‘A Casa Recebe’.

Matthew Clarke

Matthew Clarke‘s passion for art started at a young age, and he began participating in the National Independence Festival of Creative Arts (NIFCA) while attending St. Michael’s School. Through the Festival, he achieved bronze, silver, gold and incentive awards, and went on to be the recipient of the Prime Minster’s Scholarship for Visual Art in 2003. Clarke completed his Associate Degree in Visual Art at the Barbados Community College (BCC) which earned him a Barbados Exhibition for tertiary studies, and in 2009 he obtained a Bachelor Degree with honours in Graphic Design at the same institution. He has freelanced for various design agencies (Virgo, 809, RED Advertising, G and A Communication, RCA) and worked at the Nation Publishing Company on the Attitude Magazine, creating its logo and design. He has also worked at Banks Holdings Limited (BHL), where he was appointed Internal Web Designer in charge of the Banks Beer website.

In addition to working on independent projects, he has been working as a graphic designer at RED Advertising and PR Agency as of 2011, where he is currently Deputy Creative Director. He is the co-owner and principle of a Caribbean comic company called Beyond Publishing, which has published over 22 books sold digitally and in print, both locally and internationally.

Versia Harris

Versia Harris is a Barbadian artist living and working in Weston, St. James. She graduated from the Barbados Community College with a BFA in the Studio Art programme in 2012, with an award from The Lesley’s Legacy Foundation. She has since participated in four residencies, regionally and internationally. In 2014, she was one of 83 artists selected to show in IV Moscow International Young Art Biennial. Versia tackles perceptions of fantasy in contrast to the reality of her original character. She uses Adobe Photoshop to manipulate her pen drawings to create the animations.

Mark King

Mark King is a multidisciplinary Barbadian artist who explores archetypes and social norms. Interested in notions of topography and megalography, Mark makes coded, often satirical work that highlights social phenomena. The son of a former diplomat, mark has called several places home. Growing up in the Bahamas, Belgium and the United Sates has left Mark with a unique perspective that directly influences his artistic practice.

Mark holds a Masters of Fine Arts degree in Photography from the Academy of Art University is San Francisco, California. In 2011 the Lucie Foundation handpicked Mark for their apprenticeship programme. During the same year he participated in a screen-printing residency at Alice Yard in Port of Spain, Trinidad. In  2013, he participated in two residencies – Fresh Milk in Saint George, Barbados and Ateliers 89’ in Aruba for the Mondriaan Foundation’s Caribbean Linked II. Last year he released his first monograph, ‘Plastic’ through MOSSLESS publishing at The Newsstand in New York. Plastic has gone on to The 2013 New York Art Book Fair at MoMA PS1, The 8Ball Zine Fair, the 2013 I Never Read Art Book Fair in Basel, Switzerland, and The 2014 LA Art Book Fair in the Geffen Contemporary at MOCA. In July – August of 2014, Mark’s work was on display as part of the International Artist Initiated project (IAI) hosted by the David Dale Gallery & Studios as part of The Glasgow 2014 Cultural Programme, which took place alongside this year’s Commonwealth Games.

Simone Padmore

Simone Padmore, also known as Simone Asia, is an Illustrator who was born on May 2nd, 1990 in Bridgetown, Barbados. Since the age of four she has been very interested in art, particularly the drawing of human figures. By the time she completed secondary school, Simone had decided that Visual Arts was the career path she would choose. From 2006-2011, Simone attended the Barbados Community College where she received her Associate’s Degree in Visual Arts and her Bachelor’s of Fine Art in Studio Art. Attending the Barbados Community College exposed Simone to many different art forms, techniques and experimentation. As the days went by she grew a stronger sensibility for drawing and developed a love for pen and ink which today is her desired choice of media. After college, Simone continued her independent practice. She has shown in art shows and fund-raising events. Simone won the incentive award at NIFCA in 2011. She also was featured in magazines such as the Arc Magazine, FuriaMag magazine and Caribbean Beat Magazine along with a few online fanzines. Simone has done two residencies so far – Fresh Milk in 2012 and Projects and Space in 2014. Simone is currently developing her personal work and is due to attend another residency in Trinidad with Alice Yard in August.

 Ronald Williams

Ronald Williams is a multimedia artist and graduate of the Barbados Community College Fine Arts program. His work currently focuses on race and sociology, most recently investigating the role that sports and the black athlete play in society. He manipulates popular based imagery to compose computer-generated images that explore sports, perceptions, stereotypes and fantasies about the black athlete or figure. This collage series was shown in Scotland at the International Artist Initiated (IAI) project, presented by the David Dale Gallery & Studios as part of The Glasgow 2014 Cultural Programme which took place alongside this year’s Commonwealth Games.

Mapping the Commonwealth with “Glasgow’s Finest”

Alberta Whittle shares her thoughts on the recent International Artist Initiated (IAI) project in Glasgow, presented by the David Dale Gallery & Studios as part of The Glasgow 2014 Cultural Programme which took place alongside this year’s Commonwealth Games. Read more below:

Photograph by Rayanne Bushell

Representatives of Clark House Initiative, RM, Video Network Lagos, Fresh Milk; Alberta Whittle and Rayanne Bushell

 “In 1884 the Earl of Rosebery visits Australia and asks, ”Does the fact of your being a nation… imply separation from the Empire? God forbid! There is no need for any new nation, however great, leaving the Empire, because the Empire is a Commonwealth of Nations“.”[1]

In the summer of 2014, the Commonwealth Games arrived in Glasgow. Much like any travelling circus, the Games brought believers, performers, participants and an audience. Like any participant, I came to Glasgow with my own expectations. Having lived in the city for many years, but failing to assimilate completely, I still feigned the confidence that comes so easily for those who know the area. Sharing a taxi ride, with the self-proclaimed “Glasgow’s Finest”, the driver quizzed me on my knowledge of the city’s geography, asking me where roads connected, easily highlighting my failure to truly belong to Glasgow. The driver insisted on informing me that Glasgow’s taxi drivers were always known as “Glasgow’s Finest”, and I was not allowed to forget it.

During this trip, over many conversations with “Glasgow’s Finest”, a discourse of belonging and not belonging readily emerged. The drivers often assumed Barbadian artist, Annalee Davis and I were Americans, our accents blurring into a vague sense of foreign-ness. They asked why we were here, and when we explained about our project as part of the Commonwealth Games, they in turn spoke of how the Games were not for Glaswegians. The Games’ faux presentation of multiculturalism and the promotion of the idea that we are all in this together confronts the reality that, for many Glaswegians, there is a disconnect between their participation on home soil and the participation of the athletes and visitors flown in to contribute to the spectacle of imagined unity. The notion of unity between us, members of a former British colony, and Glaswegians, a nation grappling with securing their own independence, came from an unlikely direction. Driving through the Merchant City we passed roads such as St. Vincent Street and Jamaica Street; easy reminders of Glasgow’s active role within the slave trade as members of the plantocracy and as indentured servants. However, “Glasgow’s Finest” posited the belief that Caribbean and Scottish nations must be united against the English, advocating the belief that Scots also faced “oppression” from England. This supposition did not entirely surprise me, given the political climate surrounding the upcoming Scottish Referendum.

From the banners, traffic diversions and the odd, green mascot called Clyde dotted across the city, the aura of the Commonwealth seeped into Glasgow’s public spaces. As part of the celebrations, the David Dale Gallery in Glasgow’s East End invited artist-run spaces from across the Commonwealth:  Fillip (Canada),  RM (New Zealand), Cyprus Dossier (Cyprus), Fresh Milk (Barbados), Video Art Network Lagos (Nigeria) and Clark House Initiative (India) to participate in their International Artist Initiated programme.

As part of the Fresh Milk platform, Mark King, Ronald Williams and myself presented a series of interventions. Responding to the commercial nature of the area, we crafted three individual presentations. The location of the David Dale Gallery within the heart of the East End of Glasgow – once a thriving industrial boomtown – seems peculiarly apt, mirroring the substantial role of production Britain’s former colonies assumed, laying the foundation for the industrial revolution. These same former colonies are now re-positioned as independent nations, members of the Commonwealth, exhibiting artwork in their own image. The recent deterioration of Glasgow’s prominence in manufacturing, where production is now outsourced to these former colonies, lends symmetry to the proceedings.

 “Internet ultimately offers both the seductions and subductions of a postmodern “world.”’ [2]

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Sovereignty of the Imagination: Conversations III #CCF

Sovereignty of the Imagination

George Lamming’s Sovereignty of the Imagination: Conversations III is an interesting dialogue. It explores how European imperialism and colonialism has influenced the cultural identity of the Caribbean. Separated into the essaysSovereignty of the Imagination and Language and the Politics of Ethnicity, the novel addresses the way social institutions are founded in imperialism, and the way this shapes the social constructs of race, class, nationalism and popular ideas about language. It is this latter essay, and in particular Lamming’s discussion on the race relations between the Afro and Indo-Caribbean populations, which resonates with me the most.

The above excerpt is from Ronald Williams review of George Lamming’s Sovereignty of the Imagination: Conversations III, this week’s addition to the Fresh Milk Books Tumblr – the online space inviting interaction with our collection in the Colleen Lewis Reading Room.

For new Critical. Creative. Fresh reviews every week, look out for our #CCF Weekly posts and see the great material we have available at Fresh Milk!