A Curatorial Initiative Investigating the Future of Caribbean Culture
About Caribbean/The Future
Caribbean/The Future as a title for this project underscores two urgent questions. One is a desire to see into the cultural future of Caribbean people while also proposing that many of the traits visibly inherent within the cultural practices of the region are futuring practices themselves. Taking this inquiry a step further Caribbean/The Future aims to create embodied and performed experiences to consider the deep resonances of what has been inherited as ‘the Caribbean’. Through multiple disciplines, we interrogate the boundaries of what has been given in terms of Caribbean identity, and seek to address the central question: what can the Caribbean become going forward, not only as a site of cultural autonomy and belonging but as an ongoing constructed project?
Caribbean/The Future Project is a curatorial initiative designed by Candace Thompson-Zachery, Director of Dance Caribbean COLLECTIVE, that functions through the mediums of dance and movement with its intersections with visual art, discursive expositions, public engagement and installation.
About the Creator
Creator of the project Candace Thompson-Zachery, born in Trinidad and Tobago, now local to Brooklyn, NY, operates between the spheres of dance, cultural production and fitness and wellness, with a focus on the Contemporary Caribbean. She has had an established career as a performer, choreographer, fitness professional, cultural producer, teaching artist, community facilitator and Caribbean dance specialist. In addition to her work in these areas, she leads CanDanceFit, a full service fitness and movement entity, ContempoCaribe, an ongoing choreography and performance project and is the founder of Dance Caribbean COLLECTIVE, an organisational platform for Caribbean dance in the diaspora that spearheads the New Traditions Festival. A graduate of Adelphi University’s BFA in Dance, she has performed at the Queen’s Hall (T&T), Apollo Theater, the John F. Kennedy Center, New York Live Arts, has brought masterclasses to the Mark Morris Dance Center, Virginia Commonwealth University and The Ohio State University and has shown her work at Danspace Project, COCO Dance Festival (T&T), and the Brooklyn Museum. She has received special awards including being a part of the inaugural Dancing While Black Fellowship Cohort 2015/2016, an Adelphi University 2017 10 Under 10 program awardee, and a Dixon Place Artist-in-Residence for fall 2017. Candace is currently a candidate in the M.A. in Performance Curation at the Institute for Curatorial Practice in Performance at Wesleyan University, recently completed the Executive Program in Arts & Culture Strategy at University of Pennsylvania with National Arts Strategies and most recently assisted Claire Tancons, a curator for Sharjah Biennial 14, on her performance focused platform ‘Look For Me All Around You’ .
About the Move + Discuss Series
The MOVE & DISCUSS SERIES is one of the programs under the Caribbean/The Future project. Living within the frames and myths of cultural inheritance, this program is a questioning of hyper-visible constructions of Caribbean cultural practice and speculates on their evolution, continuation and the kinds of roles they may play in the lives of those who identify with this culture. Each event is structured to open with an artistic activation, followed by a dialogic experience and closed by a community movement ritual, integrating the participant’s whole being into the event and providing real time feedback of the ideas discussed.
First Caribbean/The Future Event
Move + Discuss Series 1: Caribbean Folk to the Future
Bringing together Folk practitioners, Cultural leaders + Caribbean enthusiasts to move, dialogue and share knowledge in a Cultural space.
Series 1: Caribbean Folk to the Future – What is its role?
With contemporary cultural production being fast paced, highly visible and increasingly commercialised, practitioners of traditional and folk forms, are tasked with the responsibility of making and maintaining the relevance of their work. This conversation turns the focus to understanding what Caribbean folk practices offer us today and how might they be useful to us in the future, looking at renewed interests, research practices and new age strategies. Our goal is to create a space for intergenerational dialogue, cultural exchange and brainstorming around this issue.
In the coming months I hope to write about the findings from the event and start to create more awareness publicly about the challenges faced by cultural practitioners. I hope I can count on you to spread the word. Photos by Jessica Gaines