Visual Arts CompetitionStories of Courage in the Americas: Resistance to Slavery and Unity against Racism.
The Sir Arthur Lewis Community College and Organization of American States (OAS) partnered to celebrate the Fifth Annual Inter-American Week for People of African Descent in the Americas, as well as commemorate the International Day of Remembrance of the Victims of Slavery and the Transatlantic Slave Trade.
In keeping with the theme chosen by the United Nations in observance of the occasion, the theme adapted to the OAS is;
Stories of Courage in the Americas: Resistance to Slavery and Unity against Racism.
Part of this commemoration was the organization of a visual arts competition for persons around the island.
An exhibition showcasing the submissions of the various artists was held on Wednesday May 25th 2022, with a final judging ceremony being conducted the following Friday, May 27th.
Carnivals and the Black Atlantic:
Festivals, Social Movements and Diasporas
Almost every country in the Americas has a carnival festival in their ritual calendar. Throughout the Americas - from Rio's and Bahia’s carnivals in Brazil to the Trinidad and Tobago carnival and the New Orleans’ Mardi Gras - carnivals reflect the social order and the attendant social conflict as well as the submerged aspirations and tensions of the respective societies.
Throughout the greater Caribbean and in the Caribbean diaspora, the spread of carnivals have become expressions of national and Pan-Caribbean identities much in line with the transnational and transcultural notion of a “Black Atlantic”.
These carnivals have grown in socio-cultural and political stature and economic importance as generators of festival tourism and new cultural art forms and creative industries exports. In this presentation I will elaborate on how the carnivals allow for the unmasking and re-imagination of social constructions embodied in notions of empire, nation, class, ‘race’, gender, sexuality, ethnicity and even development.
As such, carnivals are not just a ritual, aesthetic and commercial space where psychic and bodily pleasures are enacted, represented and marketed. It is an arena where social values and meaning are put on public display, negotiated and contested.
— Abstract for Carnivals and the Black Atlantic, courtesy of presenter Dr. Keith Nurse.