by Howard Campbell
SOUTH FLORIDA – Like many individuals raised in rural Jamaica in the course of the early Sixties, Paul Blackwood was half of a big household who lived in difficult circumstances.
These years, across the time Jamaica gained independence from Nice Britain, impressed him to turn out to be an artist. The simplicity of nation life is depicted in a lot of his works, a few of which will probably be proven on the August 4-6 Black Ladies’s Expo, which takes place at McCormick Place Conference Heart in Chicago.
Blackwood, who divides his time between Jamaica and New York, remembers residing with 11 siblings in a modest picket home in Westmoreland parish, practically 200 miles west of Kingston, the capital.
“My items are principally depicting our wealthy Jamaican tradition, as a result of I’m an actual nation boy as we are saying. Born in Black River (in neighboring St. Elizabeth parish) and grew up in Westmoreland within the early ‘60s; our mother and father taught us to like and serve God, have manners and that may take us by means of the world,” Blackwood associated.
Self-taught, he describes his work as a mixture of summary, semi summary, panorama and collages. In easy phrases, his creations are distinctly Jamaican.
“My artwork is generally true to our life-style which should not at all times be a thriller however simply acknowledged and might evoke treasured recollections for the viewers. Jamaicans are Out of Many, One Individuals, stuffed with impeccable historical past,” Blackwood mentioned.
Jamaicans rejoice independence on August 6. On that date in 1962, it turned a sovereign nation after over 300 years as a British colony.
Blackwood started portray in 1982, and three years later mounted his first exhibition in London. Since then, he has staged comparable occasions all through the Caribbean, Canada, Europe and america.
A few of the celebrities who personal Blackwood items are Emmy winner Sheryl Lee Ralph, soul singer and Grammy winner Roberta Flack and (the late) Lowell Hawthorne, founding father of Golden Krust eating places.
Like legendary Jamaican painter Barrington Watson, certainly one of his heroes, Paul Blackwood strives to mission the wonder and variety of his nation. Guests to the Black Ladies’s Expo will expertise that versatility this weekend.