The ‘practice of art’ – taken here to mean communication through the expressive manipulation of objects – may be described as a torch-lit search, aided only by a fragmentary map: an artwork flashes up to briefly illuminate the location and imagination of the artist. In this text, Nicholas Morris uses self-examination to describe some examples of such moments of illumination for a Caribbean artist living first ‘at home’ and then in diaspora. A series of movements as a practising artist and educator, migrating between various locations in the Caribbean and in other cultural and linguistic spaces, are addressed in the following. They show up the unevenness of the existing support structures for art, as well as perceptions of appropriate creative or critical spaces in transitional regions and, finally, at the edge – for example, at ‘frontiers’ such as central Germany.
Keywords: Caribbean, diaspora, painting, installation, migration, multiplicity
Full text: OAJ_issue5_morris_final_v2 PDF (1.6 MB)
Nicholas Morris was born in Kingston, Jamaica, in 1967. Having spent his early life in Jamaica and Barbados, he received a BA in Visual Studies from Dartmouth College, USA, in 1989, a Postgraduate Diploma in Visual Art from Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art in Scotland in 1990 and an MFA from Stanford University, USA, in 1994. A tutor for painting and installation at the Edna Manley College of Visual and Performing Arts in Kingston from 1995 to 2001, he is now living, working and teaching in Darmstadt, Germany, and visits his grandchildren in Manchester,
UK, as often as he can.