News Release: HAMILTON, Bermuda – Lisa Howie, Founder of Black Pony Gallery, announces that cultural tours are now part of her business plan, starting with a curated week-long tour for Diaspora Vibe Cultural Arts Incubator (DVCAI). The DVCAI International Cultural Exchange is a unique program that actualizes a roving exchange with Miami artists living in the Diaspora and moving in and out of the Caribbean annually. 

Entitled ‘Island Scapes: Ascending Triangle, Bermuda 2024’,this cultural exchange is presented in collaboration with host Black Pony Gallery and its Director, Lisa Howie. DVCAI’s firstcultural exchange to this isolated island in the Northern mid-Atlantic engages in collective workshops, studio visits, and dialogues between Miami and Bermudian artists and curators from March 20- 27, 2024. 

This first trip by DVCAI brings 16 US, primarily Miami-based artists to Bermuda. Participants are interested in and committed to sharing and expanding their contemporary visual art practices across linguistic areas of the region. Following DVCAI’s successful model of conducting cultural exchanges to an area three times in nonconsecutive years to establish deep connections that reverberate back to Miami culturally, reciprocal residencies with Bermudian artists will occur in 2024-2026 at DVCAI Studio 164 in Miami-Dade County. Bermudian artists interacting during this first exchange will be highlighted during DVCAI virtual forums and at exhibition opportunities nationally and internationally.

Activities include documentation through photography, leading to the publication of an exchange catalogue that captures partners, interviews, and artwork images. Afro-diasporic scholar Dr. Alix Pierre pens an essay. DVCAI Artists create exchange journals documenting the interactions, creative learning, and visual journeys experienced. Journals are added to the DVCAI Living Archive held at dLOC (Digital Library of the Caribbean) at Florida International University and the University of Miami Library, Special Collections Department. 

The visit to Bermuda offers a great comparison and counter-narrative to the narratives of islands previously visited by DVCAI artists. DVCAI is looking to challenge boundaries, expand perceptions of isolation, and are curious to listen and hear how the pandemic affected Bermudian artists, who mayrecount feeling deeply isolated from the world. Host Lisa Howie commits to taking the artists to studio visits and engaging the group in a variety of cultural and walking experiences to learn about Bermuda’s complex history, and to see and feel the landscape.

“To address the question of ‘Why Bermuda?’ I must speak of my own curiosity about these British islands. It is separated and filled with amazing visuals and geography,” states DVCAI Curator Gordon-Wallace. In preparing this exchange, working themes have risen organically that reflect the charged history of Caribbean Art, such as the importance of place, the questioning of women’s roles, and the prevalence of the still-life tradition in art making. 

By working with Black Pony Gallery’s Founder Lisa Howie, DVCAI will explore leading Bermudian arts institutions. We will explore how artists in the Caribbean Islands are challenging boundaries and defying easy categorizations. This exchange examines broad trends in Caribbean visual culture and calls into question some notable absences. Participants will use art to unearth and interrogate baseline issues of race, class, and gender and discover the heritage and artistic commonalities with international colleagues in Bermuda.

  • Supported in part by Miami-Dade Department of Cultural Affairs. The Miami-Dade Council, the Mayor and the County Commissioners. 

ABOUT BLACK PONY GALLERY

Led by cultural entrepreneur Lisa Howie, Black Pony Gallery is an art platform that presents a perspective on contemporary art makers from the Caribbean and mid-Atlantic Islands. Black Pony Gallery intends to gain awareness of and appreciation for these artistic talents by featuring emerging to established artists who reside in the Azores, Bermuda, Cuba, The Bahamas, Cayman, and Turks & Caicos. To further her vision, Lisa created the Atlantic World Art Fair in 2021, the only annual online art market dedicated to contemporary visual art makers in the region. In 2023, Lisa merged the online fair with Vanessa Selk to create Atlantic Arthouse, making its international debut in Miami 2023. This year, the gallery broadens its curatorial services to include cultural art tours on island and overseas.