NGJ's Jamaica Jamaica Exhibition launches for Reggae Month


On Sunday, February 2nd, 2020, the first global palindrome day in 909 years according to CNN.com, The Ministry of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sports, the National Gallery of Jamaica (NGJ) and the Jamaica Music Museum in association with La Philharmonie de Paris opened the exhibition Jamaica, Jamaica! 
International travel blogger and World Nomads contributor Diedre McLeod of www.DiedreinWanderland.com, a member of the Love Not Likes blogging community was on hand to takeover Reggae MonthJa’s IG to show an insider’s perspective.

Initially launched at Philharmonie de Paris in 2017 and titled after the 1985 hit song by Brigadier “The General” Jerry, Jamaica, Jamaica! examines how Jamaica has become an extraordinary force in the world heritage and history of music.
Jamaica Jamaica presents the history of reggae dancehall in a series of themed rooms that the viewer can walk through, interact with a listening booth, and feel the vibrations of historic melodies pulsing through sound systems in various rooms. The Exhibition melds the social scenes of reggae with historical artifacts like vintage stereos and African drums. Jamaica Jamaica intertwines history, melodies, and scene-setting in a way that invites a harmonious experience for the viewer.

Jamaica, Jamaica! brings together rare memorabilia, photographs such as the late Peter Rickards of Afflicted Yard, visual art, audio recordings and footage unearthed from Jamaica’s best museums and most elusive collectors and studios, while collaborating with legendary local visual artists to convey the essence of true Jamaican music experience.
Jamaica has produced some of the major musical currents in today’s popular music landscape; yet, its rich history and diversity are often overshadowed by its most famous icon, reggae superstar Bob Marley. This exhibition aims at showcasing a broader vision that has allowed the world to know the island’s music, by digging deep into its past and present in search for the roots of “rebel music”, beyond the cliché and the postcard.

The most ambitious exhibition ever staged on the topic, Jamaica, Jamaica! celebrates the musical innovations born on the island in its specific historical and social contexts, unveiling the story behind the musical genres of Kumina, revival, mento, ska, rocksteady, reggae, dub, and dancehall – as well as the impact of the local sound system culture, street culture, and visual arts on today’s global pop culture such as Ebony Patterson’s installation.
Sebastien Carayol, Independent Curator. Born and raised in France, Sebastien Carayol initially discovered Jamaican music through the power of Jamaican-English sound systems in London and developed his passion for this initial experience. His quest led him to interview key characters in reggae’s history for music magazines such as Wax Poetics, Natty Dread, Riddim, Vibrations. He directed the acclaimed 10-episode documentary series Sound System for the ARTE channel (France/Germany) in 2017. As a curator, he has developed exhibitions on the topic in Paris, France (Jamaica, Jamaica!, Philharmonie de Paris, 2017; Say, Watt, le Culte du Sound System, La Gaîté Lyrique, 2013) and Los Angeles (Hometown Hifi, Sonos Studios, 2015).
Herbie Miller, Jamaica Music Museum.  Herbie Miller is a cultural historian specializing in slave culture, Black identity and ethnomusicology. He is the Director/Curator of the Jamaica Music Museum where he introduced the popular Grounation series. Miller managed reggae stars The Skatalites, Toots & the Maytals, Third World and Peter Tosh. In a career that spans over 40-years, he has produced exhibitions, concerts, and recordings of ska, reggae, and jazz, locally and internationally. He also composed and produced the critically acclaimed “Aluta Continua” done by reggae artist Big Youth. Two of his songs, “Feel It” and “Survival Plan” was used in major Hollywood movies Something Wild and The Manchurian Candidate.  A prolific writer, Herbie Miller has had his essays published in journals, magazines and book chapters.
O’Neil Lawrence, National Gallery of Jamaica. O’Neil Lawrence is the Chief Curator of the National Gallery of Jamaica, and also has curatorial oversight for their western branch National Gallery West. He was the lead curator on the exhibitions Seven Women Artists (2015), Masculinities (2015), I Shall Return Again (2018) and Beyond Fashion (2018).

About the National Gallery of Jamaica
The National Gallery of Jamaica, established in 1974, is the oldest and largest public art gallery in the Anglophone Caribbean. It has a comprehensive collection of early, modern and contemporary art from Jamaica along with smaller Caribbean and international holdings. A significant part of its collections is on permanent view. The NGJ has an active exhibition program, which includes retrospectives of work by major Jamaican artists, thematic exhibitions, guest-curated exhibitions, touring exhibitions that originate outside of the island, and, its two recurrent national exhibitions, the Kingston Biennial and the NGJ Summer Exhibition. The NGJ offers a range of educational services, including guided tours, lectures and panel discussions, and children’s art programs and also operates a gift shop and coffee shop.
The National Gallery of Jamaica is a Division of the Institute of Jamaica, an Agency of the Ministry of Culture, Gender, Entertainment, and Sport.
Visit www.reggaejamaica.com to view the full calendar or download the app from the Google Play and Apple store. Follow @lovenotlikesja and @reggaemonthja’s for all the Reggae Month’s activities for the month of February.
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