McCoy Prize exhibition: Industrial, chic, modern

The McCoy Prize exhibition opened last Thursday when winners of the much coveted prize were announced.

Now in its fifth year, the prize attracted record numbers, both in entries received and the crowds that gathered on the opening night – so many, in fact, that late comers were unable to squeeze into the foyer where speeches and prize giving was conducted.

Cayman Bracker Tenson Scott scooped up both winner of the fine craft category, for his delicately crafted The Dirty Joke Necklace, and best in show.

Sheree Ebanks garnered the overall prize in the fine photography category for The Light Bath, while Nasaria Suckoo-Chollette, a prolific Caymanian artist and member of Native Sons, walked off with the overall winner of the fine art competition for her mixed media Maiden Plum.

The prize has spurred many past winners to excel in art. This year’s three winning artists will surely be no exception, receiving a welcome boost to their profiles in keeping with the prizes mandate to promote and reward excellence in Caymanian art.

The prize, set up by North Side’s McCoy family in 2001 and jointly administered by the Cayman Islands National Gallery, the Cayman Islands National Museum and prize creator Harris McCoy III, was this year hosted by the National Museum.

Held at its support facility – an area used for storage – the exhibition is not only a showcase of the very best of Cayman’s art, but also illustrates how with imagination and creativity an empty space can be put to good use.

From a bare shell the team at the museum has transformed the support facility into a chic modern exhibit, with metal mesh partitions and creative lighting giving an edgy industrial feel.

The art on show is diverse and runs the gamut. Work displayed is of a particularly high standard, thanks to the introduction of a pre-jury in the prize’s efforts to raise the bar in the quality of Caymanian art.

Still to be announced are the artist’s award and people’s choice. The latter will be decided by votes which visitors to the exhibition will be able to cast by filling out a form and posting it in a designated box at the show. Winners of these two categories will be announced via media on 15 June.

All winning pieces will be added to the McCoy Collection, part of the National Collection.

The exhibition runs until 28 July and is open Tuesday, Wednesdays and Thursdays, 10am to 12pm and 2pm to 4pm. Contact the museum on 949-938 for further information and directions to the show.

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