Monday, September 15, 2014

A conversation with María Elena Ortiz

Thursday 18 September, 2014, 7 pm, at Alice Yard

María Elena Ortiz is a Miami-based Puerto Rican curator and the 2014 recipient of the Colección Patricia Phelps de Cisneros Travel Award for Central America and the Caribbean. In September 2014, she will spend a week at Alice Yard as researcher in residence. On Thursday 18 September, at 7 pm, she will give an informal talk at Alice Yard on her current curatorial interests.

Her talk will focus on examples of video and performance art practices in contemporary art, and the possible roles of the curator. Video artists discussed will include José “Bubu” Negrón, Christian Jankowski, Isaac Torres, Nuria Montiel, and other artists making works about Caribbean dynamics.

All are invited.

About María Elena Ortiz:

María Elena Ortiz currently works as a curatorial assistant at the Pérez Art Museum Miami (PAMM). Previously, she worked as the curator of contemporary arts at the Sala de Arte Público Siqueiros in Mexico City, where she organised several projects, including Carlos Motta, The Shape of Freedom (2013), and Rita Ponce de León, David (2013). She has also collaborated with institutions such as TEOR/éTica, San Jose, Costa Rica; Tate Modern, London; the Museum of Craft and Folk Art, San Francisco; and New Langton Arts, San Francisco, among others. In 2012, she curated Wherever You Roam at the Museum of Latin American Art, Long Beach, California. Ortiz has contributed to writing platforms including Fluent Collaborative, Curating Now, and DaWire. She has a Masters in Curatorial Practice from the California College of the Arts (2010).

About the Colección Patricia Phelps de Cisneros Travel Award:

The Cisneros Award supports a contemporary art curator based anywhere in the world to travel to Central America and the Caribbean to research art and cultural activities in the region. Ortiz will use the award to visit new and established contemporary art centres, artist initiatives, and film festivals in the Caribbean countries of Aruba, the Bahamas, Martinique, and Trinidad and Tobago. She will conduct interviews with local cultural producers and studio visits with artists to investigate film and video practices with the aim of strengthening the ties between art in the Caribbean and the Diaspora in the local community of Miami, as well as nurturing contemporary approaches to film and video in the region.

Friday, September 5, 2014

Introducing Simone Asia

Alice Yard's current artist-in-residence

To mark the end of her stay in Port of Spain, we invite you to an informal gathering on Sunday 14 September at 6 pm, when the work Simone has made at Alice Yard will be available for viewing.

In August and September 2014, Alice Yard is hosting Barbadian artist-in-residence Simone Padmore, a.k.a. Simone Asia.

A graduate of Barbados Community College (BFA in Studio Art, 2011), she is using her time in Port of Spain to make connections in Trinidad’s contemporary art networks, and develop an ongoing body of work.

She writes: “I illustrate by hand, using pen and ink as my prominent media. I am interested in illustrating concepts about the alter ego and developing my own hybrids or characters using line, space, and detail. I am interested in where my journey as an artist will take me and what other things I can learn and explore in this world, so that I can see my art evolve.”

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Trading Tales: a conversation about history and fiction

with Jane Harris, Lisa Allen-Agostini, and Michael Cherrie
Thursday 4 September, 7.30 pm, at Alice Yard 

Writers Lisa Allen-Agostini and Jane Harris

Trading Tales is a residency programme in Scotland and the Caribbean for writers of historical fiction, organised in August and September 2014 by the British Council in partnership with Glasgow’s Mitchell Library. The programme allows two Caribbean writers and one Scottish writer to explore the historical relationship between Scotland and the Caribbean, as part of a programme of activity for the Commonwealth Games.

On Thursday 4 September, from 7.30 pm, Alice Yard will host a reading and discussion with two of the participating writers, who will talk about their current works in progress, the role of fiction in exploring shared histories, and the experience of the Trading Tales project.

All are invited.

About the participants:

Jane Harris is a British writer of historical fiction originally from Glasgow, author of the acclaimed novels The Observations (2006) and Gillespie and I (2011). During her time in the Caribbean, she will visit Trinidad, Grenada, and Martinique, doing research for her next novel.

Lisa Allen-Agostini is a Trinidadian writer of fiction and poetry, and co-editor of the celebrated anthology Trinidad Noir (2008). She is a columnist with the T&T Guardian and edits the newspaper's Sunday arts supplement. She recently spent three weeks in Glasgow, based at the Mitchell Library, researching the lives of two 19th-century Scottish immigrants to Trinidad.

Acclaimed actor Michael Cherrie will also participate in the event, giving a dramatic reading of an excerpt from Harris’s novel-in-progress.

The British Council is the UK’s international organisation for cultural relations and educational opportunities. We create international opportunities for the people of the UK and other countries and build trust between them worldwide.

We work in more than 100 countries and our 7,000 staff -- including 2,000 teachers -- work with thousands of professionals and policy makers and millions of young people every year by teaching English, sharing the arts and delivering education and society programmes.