The spotlight was on Cayman’s vibrant art scene last week as local artists and galleries took centre stage for the third annual Cayman Art Week. Hundreds of art fans attended exhibitions, open studios, pop-ups and events across all three Cayman Islands making CAW23 the biggest and most busy to date.
Cayman Art Week’s founder and creative director Natalie Urquhart said, “One of the goals for Cayman Art Week was to introduce new audiences and collectors to the local art scene, so it was great to see hundreds of people out exploring and enjoying the exhibitions and events. The breadth and standard of talent on display this week shows how Cayman is establishing itself as a creative hub and we look forward to growing Cayman Art Week into an event with international standing in the years to come.”
CAW23 kicked off on Tuesday 30 May with a Collectors Preview at Abacus restaurant in Camana Bay hosted by Provenance Properties Cayman Islands and attended by the Her Excellency the Governor Jane Owen, the Hon. Bernie Bush Minister of Youth Sports Culture and Heritage, the Hon. Kenneth Bryan Minister of Tourism & Ports, and Leader of the Opposition Roy McTaggart. Special welcome remarks were also shared by CAW Patron Susan A. Olde, OBE. The reception was followed by special events at The Hub Gallery, supported by RF Bank and Trust, and the newly opened gallery by Jason Kennedy and Janine Every on the Paseo in Camana Bay.
“Cayman Art Week was designed to stimulate the creative economy of our islands and its resident artists. I am pleased to say that this event has also quickly become a crucial component in the development of art tourism in the Cayman Islands,” said Bryan. “As a supporting sponsor, the Ministry is demonstrating its commitment to diversifying our tourism product while supporting the creativity and talent of our local artists.”
40+ events across the Cayman Islands
On Thursday 1 June, CAW West featured nine venues along the Seven Mile Beach corridor including the popular Kennedy Gallery and The Gallery at the Ritz-Carlton, a colourful pop-up by artist Zhenya Xia at Kimpton Seafire Resort + Spa, Jason Kenendy and Janine Every’s new Camana Bay Gallery, and late-night opening hours at the Carlos Garcia Gallery at The Grove.
The action moved to George Town on Friday 2 June for CAW Central/Art in the City held in partnership with George Town Revitalisation, who hosted an art-themed happy hour with live music and food stalls on Cardinall Avenue. With 15 venues to visit, guests could either walk between galleries and studios or take a bus tour. Highlights included Mutiny’s On Our Block fashion show by Jawara Alleyne and Josh Pearl, Nasaria Suckoo Chollette’s Pop-up exhibition and film at Ironshore Studios, a guided tour of the private art collections at Cricket Square, Hello World’s crossover between art and tech, a lively mix of art and music at Al Ebanks Studio, and much more.
On Saturday 3 June, CAW East took three busloads out to the eastern districts, stopping by Pure Art, Scott Swing, and Avril Ward’s studio in South Sound and the Minds Eye exhibition where Virginia Foster gave tours of Miss Lassie’s house. The tour continued by exploring studios in Savannah, Bodden Town and Breakers, before concluding with a stop at Artisan Metal Works Gallery and Studios in Industrial Park, and the National Gallery’s Biennial.
Cayman Art Week in the Sister Islands featured events at Simone’s Gallery and Gordon Solomon Studio in Cayman Brac, plus special opening hours at Little Cayman Museum, the Seahorse Gallery, and D’Art of Living in Little Cayman.
Artists and galleries receive 100% sales generated during Cayman Art Week and there is no cost to participate. Cayman Art Week is produced each year by a volunteer committee with support from Patron Mrs Susan Olde and lead sponsors at Provenance Properties, George Town Revitalisation, Ministry of Youth Sports Culture & Heritage, Ministry of Tourism & Ports, and the National Gallery of the Cayman Islands.
Minister of Youth Sports Culture & Heritage the Hon. Bernie Bush said, “Events such as Cayman Art Week support two of the Ministry of Culture three priorities, namely Talent Identification and Development, and Awareness and Preservation of Culture and Heritage. This event provides opportunities for local artists to be highlighted, creates viable career options for creative minded persons and creates a bridge between traditional Caymanian arts and contemporary art. My Ministry is always seeking opportunities to sponsor and partner with Cayman Art Week and other organisations which will allow for such initiatives to grow from strength to strength. Providing opportunities for local artists and the showcasing of arts allows us to add light, texture, colour and life to our landscape.”
Although some pop-up exhibitions were only open during Cayman Art Week, many of the galleries and studios are open throughout the year. Further information on locations, opening hours and featured artists can be found at www.caymanartweek.com .
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