THE upcoming Fine Art Market at the Lions Civic Cultural Centre on February 6 will showcase local fine artists. Curator and painter Jacqueline Guzman said her aim is to give young people who might not be able to get into a gallery a chance to exhibit their work.
Guzman said the exhibition would focus on younger artists, although seasoned artists were also welcome.
“There are a lot of young people who are not able to get into galleries, and they may get despondent because they don’t see themselves evolving. I’m giving young people, and all artists, the opportunity to know the dynamic is changing in the art world, that we no longer have to exhibit in a gallery, we can collaborate the other artists in an event like this and have people come and exhibit.”
Guzman’s focus on young people and unknown artists comes from the experience she had upon returning to Trinidad after studying in the US.
“I wanted to get my work in a gallery, and what was told to me was that they wouldn’t take in my work because I am not a known artist, and initially I said that’s so terrible. They took the work eventually and sold it, but that’s when it came to my mind that there should be a platform for unknown artists, so we don’t let the person lose the essence of that creativity.
“Let them be able to know they can exhibit, that they don’t have to be in a gallery, they could go out there and people will get to know them and they will continue to want to paint. How else will they get the experience and how will people get to know about them?”
Guzman has been painting for over 40 years. She is from Diego Martin and left Trinidad at age 21 to study physical therapy in Florida. While physical therapy remains her main source of income, she said she paints as much as possible. Her art is sold through Horizons Art Gallery in St James.
“I started painting around the age of seven and have continued to this day. Art to me is an unending challenge, I see creativity in everything. Just in being outside, I’m inspired by everything I see all day. It’s a lovely thing to be an artist because you enjoy the abundance we have out there, sometimes people don’t even look up at the sky. I can’t see living without art or anything not creative, It’s a passion of mine, so regardless of whatever profession I’m in I will always be an artist.”
She said when she returned to Trinidad and Tobago, she worked on getting herself known.
“I’m well known now, my work has gone global, as far as China, Russia, England, Paris, Canada. So I’ve continued to paint and I’d always like to encourage the young artists to continue on their journey of creativity.”
Guzman said on February 6, each artist will be able to exhibit in an individual space, with some showcasing their work in tents. She said there will be networking and other opportunities. The theme of the show will be Dingolay.
“There’s a lot of networking and being inspired by each other, just being able to meet a cross-section of artists and the public as well, so they know you’re there, you exist, know that your art is alive and you’re creative. That day would be a day of lots of creativity. I also encourage two to three artists to have a workshop to teach, to give some of their experience to the upcoming person who may be interested in art. We’ll be having moko jumbies and traditional characters as well.”
She said the event will be for one day, and hopes that when covid19 is over, she will be able to extend its period and purpose.
“The last two or three occasions that I hosted this event, it was a one-day event, where we invited 45 to 50 artists, and they were well-received. We’re hoping the event will become an art bazaar, where I can invite artists from the other islands, Barbados, Jamaica, Grenada, Haiti, Antigua, St Lucia, St Kitts, all the islands, we would love to have them showcase their work here, so that would be my main goal in doing an event like this. I would love to encourage students to exhibit, not to be afraid but to come out and showcase. There’s such a lot of talent here in Trinidad, it’s just that the younger people are not able to get into a gallery.”
Guzman said artists wanting to exhibit at the event can call her at 755-3656, her sister Suzanna Isaac at 637-0971 or contact them on Facebook at The Fine Art Market.