September 17, 2019

Ministry of Culture supports growth of the Cayman Islands National Art Collection

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The Ministry of Culture has supported the expansion of the at the for a second year through the acquisition of four new artworks. Each artwork is by a significant Caymanian artist, working in a contemporary context.

As part of the National Gallery’s () acquisition strategy, significant works of art by Cayman artists are identified annually by ’s Collections & Exhibitions Committee with the hope that sponsorship will be secured to acquire the work for the National Art Collection. Work is selected based upon: the significance of the artist, the standard of work, the significance of the work in an exhibition capacity, and popular appeal (works that has received strong positive public feedback).

The four artworks selected for this donation are by preeminent Caymanian artists: Native Sons’s Chris Christian, Gordon Solomon and Al Ebanks, along with Shane “Dready” Aquart. “Each of these artists is working in a wide range of media,” says NGCI Director Natalie Urquhart. “Their work is a vehicle through which to bring attention to our cultural heritage in new ways, to challenge existing borders, and to begin articulating new meanings for contemporary Caymanian identity in the 21st century. They are all excellent examples of the highly skilled, critically engaged work that is being practiced by our contemporary artists.”

When asked about the acquisition, Minister for Culture Hon. Dwayne S. Seymour, MLA, JP said “As Minister for Culture, I am delighted that we have been able to help acquire these important pieces for the National Art Collection for the people of the , now and long into the future. The four artists are masters of their genre and these particular pieces are works of the finest calibre.”

NGCI Chairperson and Collection & Exhibitions Committee Chairperson Susan A. Olde, OBE said, “The National Gallery is honoured to receive these works in trust for the people of the Cayman Islands and we wish to extend our sincere gratitude to the Hon. Dwayne Seymour, Minister for Culture for his foresight in supporting the growth of the National Art Collection. Budget constraints have limited acquisitions historically, and this support has ensured that these four works of national significance remain on island and publicly accessible now, and for future generations.”

The National Art Collection is on display in the NGCI’s Upper Gallery. It is open from Monday to Saturday, 10.00am to 5.00pm, and closed on Sundays and Pubic Holidays. Admission is FREE. For further information call (345) 945 8111. Or view the collection electronically via NGCI’s Virtual Tour of the Upper Gallery at  https://www.nationalgallery.org.ky/visit/ .

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