‘I Had A Dream of a New Old Caribbean’ is the latest body of work by Barbadian multidisciplinary artist Taisha. In this collection Taisha imagines a new story of how Afro-Caribbean people came to populate the islands. Proposing that they arrived as superheroes, not enslaved persons. Taisha uses this ‘new history’ as a reference guide when exploring the island of Barbados; instead of seeing the colonial history of the beaches, towns and sugar-fields she imagines the homes of the superheroes, how they would adorn themselves, where would they play, what would they eat and what materials they might make jewelry and talismans from. Each jewelry piece serves as tangible anchors to build new memories on to combat the complexities of postcolonial trauma.
The collection uses crushed West Indian welks shells, queen conch shells, volcanic ash from a recent eruption, and clay, all gathered and refined by Taisha during her walking meditations on the island. With the forms and materials of each piece Taisha tells individual stories of resilience, survival, creolized knowledge and vibrant futures.
Taisha is a multidisciplinary artist working in performance, sculpture, body adornment, and installation. Her work seeks to promote solidarity with the land and investigate the liminality of life in the Caribbean after colonialism and into the Anthropocene. Taisha invents ‘devices’ and explores performances for self-healing and facilitation of social dialogue about climate justice while proposing methods for rebirth, reclamation, and reimagining the value of Caribbean people and communities.
Taisha received her BFA from Pratt Institute in 2018 and currently works in Barbados collaborating with biochemists, farmers and medical practitioners to pool knowledge and resources and shed light on social issues.
Join Taisha in conversation with Nicholas Hyatt on NYCJW’s IG Live on Wednesday 17th at 11am to hear more about the collection.