Smith & Benjamin’s ‘BAHAMIAN ART & CULTURE’ A Weekly Digest of Art & Cultural News from The Bahamas and the World – Since 2000 • • • • CLICK HERE

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Smith & Benjamin’s ‘BAHAMIAN ART & CULTURE’
A Weekly Digest of Art & Cultural News from
The Bahamas and the World – Since 2000

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CLICK HERE to see online version.

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Thursday, August 1st, 2019
Issue No. 387

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COVER IMAGE:
“Tings Sweet” by Bahamian artist Jessica Whittingham
(Digital Collage / 2019 / 8.5 x 11)
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The work of Bahamian artists Jessica Whittingham and Jalan Harris will be on display in a new collage exhibition entitled “Cuttin’ Up” opening tomorrow night, Friday, August 2nd at 6:30pm at PopopStudios Gallery in Chippingham.
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See event details below.

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art & cultural
events calendar

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TONIGHT:

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E X H I B I T I O N :

“Material Beauty” by Alistair Stevenson

• TONIGHT: Thursday, Aug. 1st | 6–9pm | Doongalik Studios Gallery

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Work by Alistair Stevenson.

Alistair Stevenson’s “Material Beauty” is a prime example of the progression of ceramic art into the 21st century. Stevenson’s oversized, expressive porcelain jewelry pieces seek to materialise the importance of beauty for human beings and its place in our daily lives.

Having grown up along the glistening white sandy shores and beautiful yet treacherous limestone cliffs of Long Island, Bahamas, Stevenson’s work has always been inspired by nature. His compositions of natural forms and textures attest to this allowing viewers to connect with nature inside the concrete walls of a gallery space.

Stevenson’s visual art education began with an Associate’s degree in Fine Art from the University of The Bahamas. After this, he completed a Bachelor’s degree in Ceramic Art at the Jingdezhen Ceramic Institute, Jiangxi Province, China and is presently studying for a Master’s degree in Sculpture at the Central Academy of Fine Art in Beijing.

Please join us at Doongalik Studios & Art Gallery tonight Thursday, August 1st, 6pm–9pm to celebrate the opening of “Material Beauty”. The works will be on display until the 14th of August and will be available for purchase to aid with Stevenson’s post-graduate educational pursuits at the Central Academy of Fine Arts in Beijing, China.

CLICK HERE for event Facebook page.

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E X H I B I T I O N :

NAGB’s Mixed Media Summer Art Camp Awards Ceremony and Exhibition

• TONIGHT: Thursday, August 1st | 7pm–9pm | At the NAGB

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The National Art Gallery of The Bahamas (NAGB) invites the public to the exhibition opening reception and awards ceremony for our Mixed Media Art Summer Camp (MMASC) tonight, Thursday, August 1st, from 7pm to 9pm. The evening begins in Fiona’s Theatre then moves to the Project Space Room where the exhibit will be on display.

This summer’s theme was “Parading through the Caribbean” and it allowed campers to explore indigenous festivals throughout the region. Festival experiences included Kadooment from Barbados, Ole Mas from Trinidad & Tobago, Rara from Haiti and Diwali from Guyana. In addition to creating individual works, campers worked with artist Jevon Thompson to paint three murals on the museum’s property.

Join the NAGB tonight to experience the vibrant and fresh talent of The Bahamas’ young creatives! Light refreshments will be served. The Mixed Media Art Summer Camp Exhibition will be on display through August 25th, 2019.

CLICK HERE for the event’s Facebook page.

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TOMORROW

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E X H I B I T I O N :

“Cuttin’ Up” Collage Exhibit featuring
Jessica Whittingham and Jalan Harris

• TOMORROW: Friday, Aug. 2nd | 6:30–9pm | PopopStudios

Exhibition by Bahamian collage artists Jessica Whittingham and Jalan Harris.

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NEXT WEEK:

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D I S C U S S I O N :

Women’s Wednesdays: Women in the Arts

• Wednesday, August 7th | 6pm–7pm | At the NAGB

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The Bahamas is home to vibrant, diverse, and talented artist communities. This month, Women’s Wednesdays (WW) at the National Art Gallery of The Bahamas (NAGB) will be turning the spotlight on “Women in the Arts”.

On August 7th, WW will bring together a panel of women artists to talk about their work and ask the following questions:
• What has been your experience as a woman creating art in The Bahamas?
• How is art being used (and how can it be used) to address issues regarding gender and sexuality?
• How do you see art influencing people and functioning in our communities at a time when society is polarized on many issues?
• What challenges do women artists face in creating and sustaining their art projects, and what strategies can we adopt to better support them?
• How does (and how can) art connect women across the Caribbean and African Diaspora?

CLICK HERE for event page.

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SAVE THE DATES

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C O N C E R T :

Nassau Music Society presents:
Elijah Stevens’ Two-City Benefit Concert Tour

• Tuesday, August 13th | 7pm | Church of the Ascension, FREEPORT
• Sunday, August 18th | 6pm | St Andrew’s Kirk, NASSAU

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Save the dates for this special opportunity to see phenomenal Bahamian classical pianist Elijah Stevens in a two-city concert tour in Freeport and Nassau in an effort to support his quest to attend the prestigious Manhattan School of Music’s Master’s Degree programme.

Elijah demonstrated star qualities right from the beginning and he continues to progress and excel at everything he does. He has been accepted to the Manhattan School of Music (MSM) for the 2019 Fall semester to pursue a Master of Arts in Piano Performance. MSM is Elijah’s dream school where he will be studying with 2001 Van Cliburn Piano Competition winner, Olga Kern.

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Elijah has planned two fundraising concerts to help defray his education expenses. The first will be in Freeport on August 13th at 7 pm at the Church of the Ascension. The second will be in Nassau on August 18th, 6 pm at St. Andrew's Presbyterian Kirk Church.

Tickets for the Freeport concert are available from The Grand Bahama Performing Arts Society (GBPAS) by calling Colleen Lewis on 727-1266 or email colleenoconnorlewis@gmail.com Tickets are also available at the contacts and locations on the attached poster.

Please help support this most deserving and talented Bahamian by attending his concerts and contributing to his education fund.

CLICK HERE to contribute to Elijah’s education at his GoFundMe page.
CLICK HERE for event page on Facebook.

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art & culture stories
from the bahamas

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Bynoe speaks to the public at Double Dutch #7 “Hot Water” opening in August 2018. (Image: Jackson Petit and the NAGB.)

NAGB announces departure of Chief Curator, Holly Bynoe

by Diana Lynn Sands

The National Art Gallery of The Bahamas (NAGB) — a world-class museum that collects, preserves, exhibits and interprets historic and contemporary Bahamian visual art — announces the departure of its Chief Curator, Holly Bynoe. The NAGB has worked closely with Ms Bynoe on several projects before her formal hiring in 2015. This cooperative partnership will surely continue, for the benefit of the institution and Bahamian artists.

Bynoe states, “The last years have been some of the most challenging and rewarding of my life. The position at the NAGB has allowed me to do important work in shaping its teenage years. I do not doubt that this work will continue as the institution builds upon its mission and vision well into the future. I would like to thank the Board of the NAGB and the wider artistic community for the tremendous opportunity provided. It allowed us to build a space of generosity and ideas, to foster true cultural and artistic integration. I am fortunate to have had the time, encouragement and support to successfully occupy this position. In truth, the region is lucky to have the NAGB as a forward-thinking institution. I look forward to working with this accrued knowledge to inform my future creative endeavours, as I settle into life in the Southern Caribbean at the end of the year.” [...]

CLICK HERE to read full release at the NAGB.

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Bahamian author Melanie Lightbourn-Rowe

Bahamian author publishes new children’s book

“Am I Daddy’s Girl?”

A tender story of a young girl growing up without the presence of her father. Take a journey with the main character as she narrates her life from infancy to adulthood, sharing loving thoughts toward her dad as she matures. For the young girl that still longs for her father’s love, Bahamian author, Melanie Lightbourn-Rowe, offers hope and healing in these beautifully illustrated pages.

Melanie Lightbourn-Rowe is a single parent, educator, writer, public speaker, and entrepreneur. She is the winner of the 2012-2013 California Regional League of Middle Schools Teacher of the Year Award and the 2013 California League of Middle Schools State Educator of the Year Award. She is passionate about working with students that hail from a variety of socioeconomic backgrounds. Author of “Things I Wish You Knew”, Melanie’s heart is to help heal the brokenness of fatherless sons and daughters through her work. She is a mother to two amazing teen boys, Sean and Corey, and resides in the city of Santa Clarita, California.

CLICK HERE to order book.

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Blue Curry-Monica McGivern

Work of Bahamian artist in multiple international exhibitions

Blue Curry was born in Nassau, Bahamas in 1974. He earned an MFA in Fine Art from Goldsmiths College, London and a BA in Photography and Multimedia at The University of Westminster, London. He was selected for inclusion in the Catlin Guide to the top 40 emerging UK artists in 2010 and was profiled in a two-part BBC documentary on graduate artists in the same year. He has exhibited widely, having participated in the 6th Liverpool Biennial and group shows at the V&A Museum, the Art Museum of the Americas, and The World Bank, among many others. He had his first institutional solo show at the Nassauischer Kunstverein, Germany in 2011. He lives and works in London and Nassau.

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Untitled by Blue Curry (2011). Slide projector carousel, ashtray, decorative planter, 10 x 10 x 10 inches. (Courtesy of the artist.)

Relational Undercurrents: Contemporary Art of the Caribbean Archipelago

• Delaware Art Museum
• Jun 22, 2019 – Sep 8, 2019

Curated by Tatiana Flores and organized by the Museum of Latin American Art in Long Beach, California, Relational Undercurrents: Contemporary Art of the Caribbean Archipelago presents 21st-century art by artists with roots in Haiti, the Dominican Republic, Cuba, Puerto Rico, Curaçao, Aruba, St. Maarten, St. Martin, Martinique, Guadeloupe, Trinidad, Jamaica, The Bahamas, Barbados, and St. Vincent. Acknowledging the great diversity represented by these various countries, the exhibition explores thematic continuities found among the region. Relational Undercurrents features contemporary painting, installation art, sculpture, photography, video, and performance by over 50 artists from the islands of the Caribbean.

CLICK HERE for more exhibition info at Delaware Art Museum.

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"55 Gallon" by Blue Curry (2016), fabricated barbecue pan steel drum ensemble.

55 GALLON

• The Empire Remains Shop, Birmingham, UK
• 1 to 31 August 2019

Derived from an indigenous Caribbean word used to describe a way of smoking meat over a wooden frame, ‘barbecue’ became part of a colonial language to racially define the people of the region, linking them with barbarism, savagery and cannibalism. Five hundred years later, contemporary Caribbean barbecues are most often conducted on large, freestanding grills made from customised 55 gallon steel barrels. This creative use of off-cast materials to serve practical needs originated from necessity and centuries of survival in small, resource-scarce places. The pan drum, for instance, is another example of such ingenious repurposing of the steel barrel, this time in service of African and Indian drumming traditions brought to the islands by slaves.

In response, Blue Curry created 55 Gallon, a new typological hybrid: an all-in-one barbecue and steel drum ensemble that explores tourist clichés of cultural artefacts, fusing their characteristic heat and sound into a single transformative moment. You can book a free 30-minute session to play on 55 Gallon in pairs or solo throughout the month of August 2019. Please contact birmingham@empireremains.net.

CLICK HERE for more on 55 Gallon.

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Picks Blue Curry

Untitled (combs) by Blue Curry (2014), 25 x 7 x 7 cm

FOREIGN MATTER

• Spanish Contemporary Art Network (SCAN)
• 4 Jul 2019 – 27 Jul 2019

A duo exhibition with artists Blue Curry and Fernando Martín Godoy.

When objects are removed from their original context, they can be arranged, collected, misunderstood and exoticized. Blue Curry and Fernando Martín Godoy, two artists from abroad living in London, bring their divergent practices together to consider the role that context plays. Curry’s work is playful and direct in its use of materials and in the symbolic possibilities of the found objects he works with. Martín Godoy’s paintings and drawings are more guarded in their approach to the object, obscuring it almost entirely and demanding the viewer’s time and observation skills before its presence materialises. In the conjunction of their works a conversation takes place, where elegance and humor lead to a number of reflections about the real and the fictive, the superficial and the transcendental.

CLICK HERE for Blue Curry’s website.

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Self portrait by Jodi Minnis.

Bahamian artist’s 24-hour endurance project honours the maternal

by Alesha Cadet

Bahamian artist Jodi Minnis last weekend proved her untiring commitment to her art and her dedication to keep evolving as she staged a 24-hour live performance at PopopStudios art gallery.

The event focused on charcoal art and the theme “And this is what I will do.”

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Jodi started drawing at 9am on Saturday and continued until 9am on Sunday. During this time she sought to negotiate time, space, and nature and what she calls ‘the maternal’. The live art performance served as an ode to her grandmothers, with whom she spent childhood Summers, tending their yards and gardens.

Inspired by these memories, Jodi drew still-lifes and created sculptures constructed from plants and objects from her maternal grandmother and mother’s garden, which she then exhibited Sunday evening.

“My maternal grandmother tends to her garden almost every day, and the plants seem more like a part of the family rather than an aesthetic element in her landscape. I grew up helping her rake leaves in the Fall or picking up mangoes from her multiple trees in the Summer. So the exhibition revolves around all of that. Summers are for grandchildren to be sent away to the islands to their grandparents... So I’m referencing that as well,” Jodi told Tribune Weekend.

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She admitted she initially had to think long and hard about the exhaustion and tediousness associated with drawing from 24 hours straight. But she also thought about her artistic practice and what she has done over the past few years to achieve certain goals, and she realised she had spent significant amount of her time creating.

“I spent hours and hours painting and drawing and printing, and I wanted to exaggerate that notion. Moreover, I wanted to reference the space, PopopStudios, as well. Popop hosted ‘Sketch 24’, which was a 24-hour drawing event when I studied at the College of The Bahamas. I wasn’t allowed to spend the full 24 hours drawing but I’d like to think of this as me giving myself the opportunity to do so while combining all that I previously said. Furthermore, charcoal is my preferred drawing medium because of its messiness and aggression, while having the ability to be a classical and eloquent medium.” said Jodi. [...]

CLICK HERE for full story on pg 14 in the Tribune Weekend.

Jodi Minnis drawing

Minnis at work on a charcoal drawing of a plant. (Image: courtesy of the artist.)

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Popop forever and ever

Bahamian artist Jodi Minnis pays homage to previous Popopstudios tradition “Sketch24” through her recent performance exhibition.

by Kevanté A.C. Cash

“Sketch24”, a concept conceptualised by the “Popop community,” particularly by artists John Cox and Heino Schmid, began around the time of 2011 when the University of The Bahamas was still the College of The Bahamas.

The event invited emerging student artists to the grounds of Popopstudios, to sketch live models and exhibit the works upon completion of the 24 hours, raising funds for the space. It started at Hillside House, also known as the Antonius Roberts Studio and Gallery, with breakfast and wounded up at the contemporary art space, Popopstudios.

When I consider the magic conjured up through Bahamian multidisciplinary artist Jodi Minnis last weekend, I turn to the words of American author, feminist and social activist bell hooks, to make sense of the moment and the feelings I felt.

“Beloved community is formed not by the eradication of difference but by its affirmation, by each of us claiming the identities and cultural legacies that shape who we are and how we live in the world.” – Killing Rage: Ending Racism (1995). [...]

CLICK HERE for full story at the NAGB.

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Nurse Carla Munroe

A creative retirement

Nurse Carla pursues life-long passion.

by Jeffarah Gibson

Retirement means different things to different people. For some it means an abundance of free time to catch up on rest and relaxation. For others, this time signifies a period in their lives in which they can finally pursue activities they were always interested in, but may have put on the back burner due to professional demands.

For Carla Munroe who has dedicated the last 30 years of her life to her nursing career, retirement means she can spend time developing and expanding her art portfolio; it’s a passion she has had since she was a child.

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Artwork by Nurse Carla Munroe.

 
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Artwork by Nurse Carla Munroe.

Nurse Carla retired from Sandilands Rehabilitation Centre last June. But even while working as a nurse she was able to utilise her art skills, creating illustrations to drive home the importance of taking medication to her patients.

Nurse Carla grew up in Duncan Town, Ragged Island the seventh of 11 children. She received her earliest education in a one-room schoolhouse on the island. Art was always of interest to her and she credits God with granting the ability to draw.

“I am blessed my God with my skills. There is a portion in the Book of Common Prayer that says: ‘O God, the creator of all things, who made us in your own image so that we should seek joy in creative work, we give thanks for your creation and for those work brings joy to others,” she told Tribune Weekend. [...]

CLICK HERE for full story on pg 13 in the Tribune Weekend.

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Cacique’s Shawn Sawyer talks to artist Daniel Belton.

Cacique Artist in the Spotlight

DANIEL BELTON: ‘Da Pallet Man’

by Cacique International

Cacique International’s “Artist in the Spotlight” series is a journey into a thriving Bahamian art scene and a look at some of The Bahamas’ most exciting artists, pushing boundaries on island and around the world.

In this episode, Cacique sits down with Nassau’s very own ‘Wood Whisperer’, Daniel Belton, who has stormed the art scene with his colourful craft.

For many, woodworking is rather simple. It involves cutting larger boards into smaller boards and then arranging them in a particular way to create something useful. For others, carpentry is the expression of creativity and emotion. I think Daniel’s work begs the question of whether or not carpentry can be considered both. Although he has only just begun to skim the surface of this previously dormant dexterity, Daniel has surpassed ‘craftsman’—he is without doubt an artist. Daniel’s desire to create using this timeless material transcends the possibilities of woodworking as we know it. His distinctive work isn’t necessarily taking advantage of the flashiest technology but rather honing in on the traditional woodcraft techniques with the addition of whimsy, bright semblance. Daniel’s commitment to work wood by hand is not so much nostalgic but more because of his innate appetite for organic creation. The result is more nuanced and spontaneous with the colours of the Caribbean speckled throughout.

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Cacique-Daniel-Belton-Sketch

CACIQUE: HOW DID YOU GET INTO ART? DID WOODWORK COME FIRST AND ART LATER? HOW DID THIS WORK?
Daniel: I enjoyed drawing from a young age. I still have elementary and high school art projects as proud keepsakes. I would say my fascination with expressive and artistic drawing came first, then it turned into an interest in technical drawing. I was always tinkering in my father’s shed using tools and scrap wood which fostered a curiosity which led to me participating in carpentry classes. At the time, technical drawing and carpentry were both electives at my school so I took both. I very much enjoyed and still enjoy taking 2D concepts and watching them take shape. The first bit of validation was receiving the ‘Best in Performance’ Award from the Ministry of Education for the 2000 BGCSE Examination in Carpentry and Joinery.

Cacique-Daniel-Belton-Piece

C. WHERE DO YOU GET YOUR INSPIRATION FROM?
D. I get my motivation from the people and environment I surround myself with. Particular people have, without knowing, played a vital role in my journey towards entrepreneurship. Without these individuals I am sure I would have lost steam but their encouragement has been a tremendous help. My family is a huge support system, they have been invaluable throughout this artistic process. I find that reconnecting with nature in some way helps me to refresh and reset my thinking allowing me to actively move towards a goal. [...]

CLICK HERE for full interview at Cacique.

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tyrone ferguson rake bird

“Untitled (Rake Bird)” (nd), Tyrone Ferguson, metal, 22 x 30 inches. (Part of the National Collection.)

From the NAGB Art Collection:

“Untitled (Rake Bird)” by Tyrone Ferguson

By Bahamian Metalsmith Tyrone Ferguson

by Natalie Willis

Metal is a tricky medium. It’s industrial, ceremonial, it can be strong enough to build bridges or soft enough that your very teeth could dent it. For Tyrone Ferguson, he doesn’t seem to find these traits something to work against, rather he works with his medium intuitively, sensitively, and brings some spirit back into metalwork and blacksmithing.

According to the Dawn Davies Collection catalogue, “Love and Responsibility” (2012), Ferguson apprenticed under the last known blacksmith in Nassau. He maintains his personal workshop to make functional objects such as chairs, stair railings, and gates like those at the NAGB - but with a focus on aesthetic and making something meaningful as much as something useful. As Erica James, PhD writes in his biography for the catalogue, “Always beckoning the viewer to touch and feel the energy of his sculpture, Ferguson’s art references time-held traditions of metal work in Africa and continues to make the vital connection between artist, object, and audience.” [...]

CLICK HERE for full text at the NAGB.

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The Place for Art presents:
Nassau’s Biggest Picture Framing Sale

Beginning today, August 1st through the 31st, The Place for Art framing centre at 20 Village Road is having its biggest picture framing sale for the entire year!

• 1, 2, or 3 items receive a 15% discount
• 4 or more items receive a 20% discount

Discounts will be offered on custom framing only. For more information, feel free to call at 393-8834 or visit them on Facebook or Instagram.

CLICK HERE to visit The Place for Art FB page.

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The Place for Art accepting applications
for September 2019 Art Classes

Art Classes for All Ages

For more information, call Kim Smith at (242) 393-8834.

CLICK HERE for more info at The Place for Art FB page.

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Sherwin-Williams 20-30% off Art Supplies

Sherwin-Williams Bahamas is having a 20%–30% off art supplies clearance sale of their Bahamian Paint stock. Sale takes place at their new Sherwin-Williams Bahamas Superstore on Tonique Williams-Darling Highway (the old Bahamian Paint building).

CLICK HERE for Sherwin-Williams Facebook page.

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about us

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Smith & Benjamin’s Bahamian Art & Culture eMagazine

Art & Culture were created to
uplift and inspire mankind.

Bahamian Art & Culture eMagazine is an email magazine concentrating on the art & culture of The Bahamas and the world around us. It is published once a week and is a service of Smith & Benjamin Art & Design, a design firm based in Nassau, The Bahamas offering graphic design, custom illustration, fine art, art marketing, art brokerage and publishing.

Dionne Benjamin-Smith, Editor-in-Chief & Publisher:
dionne@smith-benjamin.com
Stephanie Shivers, Advertising/Account/Office Manager:
stephanie@smith-benjamin.com

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We offer affordable, artist-friendly rates plus we boast a hand-cultivated database of thousands of people throughout The Bahamas and the world who are specifically interested in Bahamian art and culture. Call Stephanie, our advertising manager, today at 377-0241 or email at stephanie@smith-benjamin.com.

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