Cayman traditions at Celebration of Art

Celebration of Art, the National Gallery’s upcoming extravaganza on Saturday, 10 February, will highlight all things art, including Cayman’s own traditional art forms such as gig spinning, thatch weaving and kite making, a press release said.

Spearheading the Heritage Art section of the event will be local company Cayman Traditional Arts, owned and operated by Christopher and Trina Christian.

CTA has become a staple at local events where organisers want to give attendees a taste of Cayman culture.

Visitors to the heritage art area will be able to see and interact with authentic various Caymanian crafts and heritage activities including rope making, cooking fritters over the old caboose, gig spinning, thatch weaving, traditional grating and kite-making.

Vendors will also be selling gigs, thatch products, graters (mini), local heavy cakes, local jams, mini catboats and other traditional Caymanian craft.

Cayman Traditional Arts was inspired by Christopher Christian’s grandmother, the late Mrs. Ellen Powery. Christopher, an accomplished native artist and Trina have developed the company and it has grown into what is now an organisation offering the public and private sector a true taste of authentic Caymanian heritage for any occasion.

CTA has showcased its demonstrations, displays and traditional crafts, trades and art at such venues as Pedro St. James, the Jazz Fest, the recent Florida Caribbean Cruise Association (FCCA) Conference and numerous private sector events.

‘Any event which celebrates art would not be complete without Cayman Traditional Arts,’ said Nancy Barnard, director of the National Gallery. ‘Chris and Trina do an amazing job of pulling together all of our talented Caymanian heritage artists and craftspeople to present an authentic Caymanian product that educates people about the many traditions, customs, rituals and pastimes that embody our history and culture, many of which, sadly, are becoming obsolete.

‘A visit to the Heritage Art area is going to be like a step back into Cayman’s rich cultural legacy, a journey to the islands that time once forgot. I look forward to seeing what CTA has in store for us all.’

Other exhibitions areas at the Celebration of Art event are fine art, gift art culinary art and film and photography to name but a few.

There will be a special area created for infants that will be fully staffed, and a Kids Zone featuring bouncing castles, a carousel and other arts and craft activities. Free babysitting for children six months to eight years old will be available and local and international food will be on sale.

In addition, numerous bands and dance troupes – including the Trade Winds, Sea n B, Barnes Dance Academy, Impulz, Coco Red, In Transit, Gone Country, North Side Kitchen Band and Heat – will be performing throughout the day. There will also be a fashion show.

Admission to Celebration of Art is free and complimentary bus transportation will be provided to and from all districts.