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Art After Ivan

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Information about Art After Ivan
Education

Published on January 22, 2008

Author: Doride

Source: authorstream.com

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Art After Ivan:  Art After Ivan Susan Mains A collection of recent work Paintings, photos, and poetry Copyright Susan Mains, 2005 Do not use without express written permission Slide2:  Presented at the Caribbean Gallery of Art Speightstown Barbados 15th January through 10th February 2005 The view from my studio in Grenada before Hurricane Ivan hit on 7th September 2004:  The view from my studio in Grenada before Hurricane Ivan hit on 7th September 2004 The view on the morning of 8th September 2004. :  The view on the morning of 8th September 2004. Look to the left:  Look to the left Look to the right:  Look to the right My House:  My House The Studio:  The Studio Slide10:  Embedded in a war zone. Devastation that looked like the explosion of a massive bomb. Picking up the pieces of a life with a dust pan and hand broom. Shards of glass, leaves, branches, dirt, clothes, books, papers… and art…strewn together in a moldy, smelly stew that could not be ignored. Day after day, after day, and still the job wasn’t finished. From within this setting a new reality demanded creation. Sitting in a tiny space in my former studio, rain dripping through the cement ceiling from above, broken windows still boarded, I painted the Grenada of my memory. It was a grieving process. I painted memories of an island life that was swept away—the fishing boats on the beaches, men mending nets, boats half way built, the working boat races at regatta time. Slide11:  “Evening Rest” Acrylic on Canvas 26” x 32” 2004 Slide12:  “Half Built” Acrylic on Canvas 24” x 20” 2004 Slide13:  “Working Boat Races I” Oil on Canvas 24” x 20” 2004 Slide14:  “Working Boat Races II” Oil on Canvas 24” x 20” 2004 Slide15:  “Work Boat” Oil on Canvas 24” x 20” 2004 Slide16:  “Peaceful River at Dawn I” Oil on Canvas 20” x 24” 2004 Slide17:  “Peaceful River at Dawn II" Oil on Canvas 24” x 20” 2004 Slide18:  “Mending Nets” Acrylic on Canvas 26” x 22” 2004 Slide19:  “Life and Death on an Island” Acrylic on Canvas 26” x 22” 2004 Slide20:  A solid week without a shower No Water in the pipes for three weeks No Tarp for two weeks No Roof for two months No phone for two weeks (my cell phone drown) No Electricity for three months No Internet, No Refrigerator No Windows….Still, no windows Yet, so much to be grateful for Life A fresh water spring a quarter of a mile from our house A gas stove Family and friends who sent aid And came to help us put the roof back on Paints and brushes retrieved from the hillside Art—a way to deal with the emotions Slide21:  The beautiful Morne Gozo now a mass of tangled tree trunks and dead, brown leaves. The reality was painful. Finally I started to record the after impressions of the storm. “The Mourning After” Oil on Canvas 20” x 24” 2004 Slide22:  “Death Dance” Oil on Canvas Diptych, 24” x 16” 2004 Slide23:  “Deflowered Courtesy Ivan” Acrylic on Canvas 24” x 20” 2004 Slide24:  Departure from my own painting style—surely after Ivan this is allowed. “Repent” Acrylic on Canvas 20” x 24” 2004 Slide25:  “National Security” Acrylic on Canvas 20” x 24” 2004 Slide26:  “Hammer of god” Mixed Media Assemblage 3 objects 6” x 20” 2004 Slide27:  “Judgement?” Mixed Media Assemblage 6” x 14 2004 Slide28:  “Sins of the trees” Mixed Media Assemblage 5” x 14” 2004 Slide29:  The misery, eased by simple pleasure …..a neighbor bringing a piece of fried fish for breakfast. The misery, eased by faith that knows there is a bigger picture. The misery, eased by the appearance of the first fruit. Slide30:  “First Fruit I” Oil on Canvas 48” x 45” 2004 Slide31:  “Flamenco Dancer” Oil on Canvas 48” x 36” 2004 Slide32:  Neighbors I could never see before, now in plain view. And I to them. “Can You See Me Now?” Oil on Canvas 48” x 30” 2004 Slide33:  My coconut tree, dearly loved, many times painted, is gone. Rest in pieces at the bottom of the hill. “Coconut Tree—Rest in Pieces” Oil on Canvas 48” x 48” 2004 Slide34:  Victoria’s flower—keeper of the secrets—also gone. Victoria’s Secret Loss Oil on Canvas 30” x 26” 2004 Slide35:  “Banana Flower I” Oil on Canvas 24” x 26” 2004 Slide36:  “Banana Flower II” Oil on Canvas 24” x 26” 2004 Slide37:  The intensity of the aftermath of the hurricane brought human emotions to a fevered pitch. The devastation to relationships came through in several paintings that are included in the “Mask” series. Slide38:  “She Hates Her Mother” Acrylic on Canvas 26 x 24” 2004 Nerves were raw, and often people took out their frustration on those who were closest to them. “She Hates Her Mother” was inspired by a conversation with a neighbor about the strained relationship with her daughter. Slide39:  “The Damage Is Already Done” Acrylic on Canvas 26” x 24” 2004 The same day a young friend came by to talk about problems she was having with her mother. The girl’s desperation brought about a response of fear and condemnation from the mother. Slide40:  “I Know Your Secrets But I Can’t Tell You” Acrylic on Canvas Dyptich 16” x 24” 2004 Yet another mother is terminally ill but keeps it to herself. The daughter knows The daughter has her visa and could immigrate but keeps it to herself. The mother knows. Slide41:  From the experience of Ivan, a new, deeper meaning has found its way into my painting. The intensity of loveliness becomes even sharper, the observation of human kind more keen, and expressed yet more blatantly. Grenada is forever changed. As am I. “Storm Coming” Acrylic on Canvas 16” x 20” 2005 Slide42:  “Survive” Acrylic on Canvas 26” x32” 2005 Slide43:  “It was the worst time I have ever gone through. I wouldn’t exchange it for anything.” Slide45:  Nights After Ivan Generators Like giant cats purring In the night And one by one they fall asleep And the valley turns as black as coal And quiet like long ago nights And the silent stars watch on. The moon rises over the ridge Full like a passion fruit And silhouettes the ghostly figures of the Disabled, armless trees. The night birds give a hoot And the tree frogs Trill their never-stop-singing song Mosquitoes fly with vengeance now Their tribes multiplied by water, water everywhere Platoons and squadrons organize the attack Their ringing in ears and stinging in rears Just making you want to Curse two bad word….. A wisp of cloud creeps over the moon Then purposefully gathers its force To drench our roofless dwellings Yet once again. Another night Our collective plight The Ease, the “dis ease” The mystery, the misery. Tell me again how this won’t last forever. Slide47:  Nights After Ivan Generators Like giant cats purring In the night And one by one they fall asleep And the valley turns as black as coal And quiet like long ago nights And the silent stars watch on. The moon rises over the ridge Full like a passion fruit And silhouettes the ghostly figures of the Disabled, armless trees. The night birds give a hoot And the tree frogs Trill their never-stop-singing song Mosquitoes fly with vengeance now Their tribes multiplied by water, water everywhere Platoons and squadrons organize the attack Their ringing in ears and stinging in rears Just making you want to Curse two bad word….. A wisp of cloud creeps over the moon Then purposefully gathers its force To drench our roofless dwellings Yet once again. Another night Our collective plight The Ease, the “dis ease” The mystery, the misery. Tell me again how this won’t last forever. Slide48:  Survivor He walked toward me on our village road A vagrant? A thief? Who could tell? For this Ivan had made the high low And evened all the scores. His hair was natty Skin, ashy grey The clothes wrinkled, soiled No shoes, ugly toes (In fact he looked rather much like me.) His shoulders bent forward The weight of water in a bucket Pulled from the spring… Going where? Home? To a pile of splintered boards and mangled tin Where once a house had been? As he neared my heart beat faster Should I be afraid? Stories of looters and rapists and Prisoners on the loose Flashed across my face. As he passed His eye caught mine He raised his hand, rested it over his heart And left me with his blessing “Courage, my sister. Courage.” Slide49:  Can It Rain Anymore? (After Ivan with no roof) Can it rain anymore? Can the moldy, slimy walls drip yet again With the water’s Incessant determination to infiltrate Each and every crevice Of my house? Can the tarp flap some more? Can the wind whistle and wail and wind Its way to make me feel like the hurricane Has come all over again? Mind you, the same tarp I was so happy to get Three days after Love at first sight The blue glow from the top come down A romantic attraction In the boudoir. Three months after Tattered and torn Whipped and worn All love done The blue glow is just damn annoying. Slide50:  Can it rain anymore? Can the buckets fill to the drip drip drop Throw the bucket out It’s reached the top Do the mopping up dance slip slip slop. Can I turn in my bed Yet again, yet again? Head to foot, foot to head Is there any dry comfort for the weary Oh dread. The steps are all black The sidewalk a slide The door jam is swollen, Can’t shut from inside The clothes line is full Same clothes for a week My black shoes are green And starting to reek. Slide51:  And when I thought I could take it no more My head bowed down My shoulders slumped over I glanced down the hill What’s that I see? The broken, bare branches Of my nutmeg tree. And out on the end at the very tip top The tiniest leaf of green had popped. New life—a promise Hope for the future. I lifted my head Wiped the tears from my face Shoulders squared Resolve Sigh Thank God for the rain. Slide52:  My Toes are Ugly My toes are ugly My face is long I’m sure I must stink But I really can’t tell. Ivan passed to visit He wasn’t so nice He should have left quickly But he stayed all night. Our roof is gone, The windows, too The sky is our ceiling now. We don’t know what to do And we don’t know when to do it. No water in the pipes No lights, no TV No radio, no showers I’m sure I must stink But I really can’t tell. Just a reminder to me to not take myself too seriously…. Slide53:  The good people in the world Have come to our relief With lots of food to eat Corn beef, corn beef and corn beef. Just for some variety A little more corn beef. The house is quite well organized With only one requirement That we put things in such a way That they won’t get wet again-a-ment. So in the kitchen, Mommy’s shoes Tucked underneath the cupboard In the bathtub, Daddy’s books All lined up like a regiment. The clothes hang in the living room Over three lines of telephone wire. We only hope when Tante rings from America We don’t answer with an underwear. Slide54:  My face is long My toes are ugly We don’t know how long we can last. I’m sure I must stink I can’t really tell, But one thing I know for sure. After sitting here with you To tell my tale Someone does stink. And it’s you. Slide55:  Susan Mains POBox 3633 St. George’s Grenada 473-405-9772 mains@caribsurf.com Slide56:  P.O.Box 3633, St George's Grenada' Telephone: 473-440-9772 email mains@caribsurf.com Born in the USA in 1958. Dual Citizen, USA/Grenada Lived in The Caribbean since 1970 Barbados, Grenada, Dominica, and settled permanently in Grenada in 1992 EDUCATION Berean Christian Academy, St. George’s Grenada Secondary Diploma Cedarville College, OHIO, USA BA., Biology, 1979 Freedom University FLORIDA, USA M.Ed., 1985, D.Ed., 1987 ART Self -Taught artist. Strong colours and contrasts characterise the paintings. SELECTED EXHIBITIONS 1987 Roseau, Dominica ,Dominica Artists Guild Group Exhibit 1987 Aquarella Gallery, T’dad 1991 Solo show, Roseau Dominica 1993-2003 St. George's, Grenada, Annual Art Council Show 1996 Solo show, Art Grenada, Fine Art Gallery St George's, Grenada 1996 Queen's Park Gallery, National Cultural Foundation Barbados, Group show Grenadian Artists 1996 Museo de Arte, 3rd Bienal, Dominican Republic 1997 Organization of American States Gallery, Washington D.C Group show Grenadian artists 1997 Exhibit with Oliver Benoit at Art Grenada, Fine Arts Gallery, Grenada 1998 Grenada Arts Council Annual Exhibit, St. George’s, Grenada 1999 Organization of American States Gallery, Washington D.C., Group Grenadian 2000 Grenada Arts Council Annual Exhibit, St. George’s, Grenada 2000 Solo Exhibit at NCB House, St. George’s, Grenada online at www.spiceisle.com/mains/art 2000 Diaspora Vibe Gallery, Miami Fl USA “Sierra Leone Series” and Residency 2000 Aalan City Gallery, Germany Group Show from Grenada Arts Council 2001- Group of 4—Diaspora Vibe Gallery, Miami FL USA--”Immigration and Boundaries” 2001 Group Show, DVG, Miami Herald--Black History Month" 2001 Miami-Dade Com. College, Miami FL USA "Sierra Leone Series" 2001 DVG "Africanado" Exhibit at Port of Miami, FL USA 2001 LaCrit Law Conference, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL USA "Sierra Leone Series" 2001 Spice Jazz Festival, Grenada, "Art of Jazz" Susan/Asher Mains 2001 IV Bienal Del Arte Caribe, Museo de Art Moderno, Santo Domingo Dominican Republic 2002 University of the West Indies Country Conference, Grenada, “Beyond Walls” 2002 Grenada Arts Council Annual Exhibit, Grenada 2002 Washington DC, OAS Gallery-28th Anniversary of Grenada’s Independence 2002 "Rude Awakening" Manhatten, New York; Group Show Diaspora Vibe Gallery 2002 Grenada Spice Jazz Festival “The Art of Jazz” Group Show Caribbean Art Exchange 2002 Art Basel Miami, Group Show “Inter/Sections” Diaspora Vibe Gallery 2003 Grenada Art Council 39th Annual Exhibit 2003 Gallery of Caribbean Art, Barbados, Two Person show with Oliver Benoit “Parallel Disparity” 2003 Diaspora Vibe Group Exhibit “Parallel Horizons” , Institute of Culture, Aruba 2003 V Caribbean Bienal, Museo de Arte Moderno, Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic 2003 Art Basel Miami, Group Show “Strata” Diaspora Vibe Gallery 2004 Habitat Caribbean, Barbados 2004 Alliance Francaise, Grenada, VISAGES, 8 Year Retrospective of the Mask Series Slide57:  SELECTED COLLECTIONS Barclays Bank Plc, Dominica National Commercial Bank, Grenada Cable & Wireless, Grenada Spice Island Beach Resort, Grenada Coyaba Beach Resort, Grenada Flamboyant Hotel, Grenada Young Sounds FM Radio, Grenada Colombian Emeralds, Int’l, Grenada Government of China on Taiwan Texaco West Indies Ltd. Bel Air Plantation Resort, Grenada Blue Horizons Cottages, Grenada Coral Sands Hotel, Barbados AT & T Wireless International Various Personal Collections in the Caribbean, North America, South America, Europe, and Asia PUBLICATIONS Spicy, Discover Grenada, Catalogue of 3rd Bienal of Museo de Arte, SantoDomingo, Greetings Magazine , Review Miami New Times, Mar 1, 2001 Visual Art As a Sustainable Resource, Paper Presented at University of the West Indies Country Conference, Jan 2002 Cariforum Magazine, “Contemporary Art in Grenada” Article, Mar 2002 The Discover Magazine, “Drawing on the Spirit of the Kalinago” Article Nov 2003 Organizing committee group shows from Grenada to Barbados, Dominican Republic, Washington D.C., USA President of Grenada Arts Council 1997-1999 Founder and Director of Caribbean Art Exchange, 2000— Curated Grenada Exhibit for the V Bienal of Caribbean Art

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