Today caribArt Collections features Hezron Henry a Guyanese artist based in the Turks and Caicos Islands.
As a child Hezron grew up in the capital of Georgetown, Guyana and lived there until his family emigrated to the Turks and Caicos Islands when he was just thirteen years old.
When asked about his formal training as an artist this is what Hezron had to say, "I’m not academically trained, I however did receive an amount of practical training attending the Burrows School of Art in Georgetown during summers for maybe 4 years from 9 years of age."
With his limited exposure to art as a child I was a bit curious as to what initially piqued Hezron's interest in art and what inspires him to create even today. His response was quite intriguing, do have a read for yourself,
"I’ve always been interested in art growing up. As a child I would read lots of comics and imitate the art in them, so I would say the fascination began the moment I was able to read. I started with drawing and pencil work but further expanded to using watercolours, acrylics and oils. Acrylic is my preferred medium of paint; I have however recently began combining mediums of digital and acrylic painting to create final pieces. My work focuses mainly on portraiture and figurative art, which I use as a representation to carry across an idea or narrative. People and faces serve as the main source of my inspiration."
As a Caribbean based artist the importance of reaching global markets from a tiny island is tantamount to success and often used as a yardstick by the general public and even artists themselves. When asked about his thoughts on Caribbean versus international audiences Hezon speaks on this sensitive topic from the perspective of his lived experience,
" From experience; I’ve found that I receive more support from an international audience as it relates to large pieces of art. The bulk of purchases of smaller art prints, and visits to my website are mostly from an overseas audience. However, we must take into account that my current location has a significantly small population and internet access across the Caribbean far differs from the rest of the world. However, Caribbean visual artists have generally needed to work much more than other art practitoners to achieve what’s considered a minimum level of success, unless they are operating outside of the Caribbean.
I’ve participated in several exhibitions over the past few years including Turks and Caicos’ Exclusive Evening of Art; which I’ve taken part in for the past 4 years. At one of the TCI exhibitions my floor collections (Crown) was sold out within 10 mins of the doors opening. I’ve also participated in exhibitions at 3 international locations as part of the Wacom Next Level Exhibition in Sydney, Melbourne and Auckland. I was also able to participate in the 2019 CARICOM Master Artists’ Exhibition at Carifesta XIV in Trinidad and Tobago and I’ve had the honour to contribute art to the country’s national museum.
Accessing international markets from the Caribbean however, is always a challenge unless there is a general consensus of support from the home community in pushing the artist and arts in general. In the case of exhibiting in Australia I was able to leverage social media and other digital access tools which lead to my success. I believe the support and appreciation of the Caribbean region and its diaspora is integral to the success of visual artists achieving true recognition and carving out sustainable careers in arts with the Caribbean as a home base."
When asked , "What are your expectations as regards to advancing your art career in the next 5 years?" Hezron's response was,
"Over the next 5 years I’m mainly looking at expanding my reach to a wider audience as I scale up my strategies to reaching new audiences and exploring new concepts in producing visual art that defy cultural boundaries. I definitely think the caribArt Collections platform is one that can be utilised as a medium of reaching an international audience for those Caribbean artists who may otherwise not have the means to reach a particular market.
Below is an impressive list of some of Hezron's achievements, exhibitions, publications and projects:
2020 – 6th Exclusive Evening of Art Exhibition, Group Show, Providenciales
2020 - Editorial Illustration, Turks and Caicos Magazine, Edition 23
2019 - Across Boundaries Exhibition, Group Show, Trinidad and Tobago National Museum 2019 - Apparel Collab, Konk
2019 – Editorial Illustration, Turks and Caicos Magazine, Edition 22
2018 - Fabric Prints, bēchë 2019 Collection
2017 - Feature, Wacom’s The Next Level 2017 Publication
2017 - The Next Level Exhibition, Group Show, Sydney
2017 - The Next Level Exhibition, Group Show, Melbourne
2017 - The Next Level Exhibition, Group Show, Auckland
2017 - Winner, Wacom The Next Level Competition
2017 - EP Cover, Maskanoo, Lady Livz
Do have a look at some of Hezron's finest pieces of artwork. Enjoy!
If you would like to see more from this artist please send your enquiry to firstname.lastname@example.org