Art and culture play a key role in the way that we express and engage with our Island Identity. The Skipton Big Ideas exhibition is demonstrates the valuable input that artists make to this discussion.
This autumn, Skipton International joined forces with ArtHouse Jersey to present their 'Big Ideas' exhibition. The event, which featured over 20 art installations by local and international artists, included sculptures, clothing and artwork centred around three key themes. The three themes- accessibility, sustainability, and identity- are all important considerations for modern day Jersey and are inherently tied to discussions of Island Identity.
The explorations of sustainability consider questions such as: how do we protect what we already have? How might we repurpose things and what will it take to change our mindsets? How do we consume less?
Thinking about accessibility, the artists were asked to engage with questions such as: are the arts accessible to all? Do some people feel excluded from the cultural narrative, and if so, how might that sense of exclusion look and feel? How might we better break down barriers in the arts?
Finally, artists engaging with the theme of identity were asked to draw inspiration from the following: where do we get our sense of identity? Where is home? How important is cultural identity and how do we square this with an increasingly global community?
The event is a demonstration of the power and diversity of islanders, and the extraordinary potential of art and culture to ensure that people living in Jersey are engaged and proud of their island, and has the capability to express our distinctive character and expand the international narrative about the island.
Speaking on the event the Minister for International Development, Deputy Carolyn Labey, said how pleased she was to see identity considered as a key theme at the exhibition: 'The exploration of the concept is an excellent example of an organisation contending with the ideas in the [Island Identity] project and advancing them in a way that makes a genuine impact which is a true credit to all the artists involved.'