Friday, August 28, 2015

Afro-Ophelia on Lake Ontario

Very Ironic, especially now. A detail from my "Tropical Night" series (2005 - ongoing) represented Trinidad in a project for the Pan Am/Parapan Games. The image “Afro-Ophelia” makes a link between the Pre-Raphaelite image of Ophelia in my Nelson Reader, the book through which formal English was conveyed to me as a child, and the front page images of the local dailies which showed the dead body of a young woman ( Beverly Jones ) who was part of a political group, called NUFF, ( the National Union of Freedom Fighters) in the 70's. I did not attempt to capture her likeness. Images of her are hard to find. I used a graphic poster like representation feeling more like a Pam Grier movie poster of that time.  I often feel that this moment, to which we have developed an astonishing blind spot, may explain something of our current social predicament. The image was also in the Trinidad Guardian, of all places, a few weeks ago and an image symbolizing her was representing Trinidad on Lake Ontario and, if that is not enough, the project was called "Watercolour." ( image courtesy the Textile Museum of Canada )

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