T&T artist selected for first TCD digital residency

July 13, 2022

Marinna Shareef of Trinidad and Tobago has been selected for The Caribbean Digital’s inaugural Virtual Artist’s Residency.

Launched in early 2022, and expected to run annually for four years, the virtual residency programme is aimed at artists of the Caribbean and its diasporas who work in digital media. It offers a cash stipend of US$5,000 to support six months of part-time research and creative work, structured mentorship by artist and Alice Yard co-director Christopher Cozier, and a final presentation of the artist’s work at The Caribbean Digital’s conference, hosted in November this year by the University of Puerto Rico.

Shareef — an early-career artist who graduated in 2019 with a BA in visual art from the University of the West Indies, St. Augustine — will also benefit from a series of virtual studio visits by professional curators or critics, and the commissioning and online publication of an essay documenting her work during the residency.

The Caribbean Digital Virtual Artist’s Residency is hosted by The Caribbean Digital (TCD) in partnership with Alice Yard, and is sponsored by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.

This residency is intended to support the development of “born-digital” creative work primarily based in digital media and tools, and encourage collaboration and cross-fertilisation between artistic practice and Caribbean Digital Humanities.

“Since the launch of TCD in 2014, we’ve deliberately incorporated the work of visual artists from the Caribbean and its diaspora each year,” says TCD co-founder Professor Kelly Baker Josephs. “Creative arts offer a form of knowledge production that takes up the same concerns academics engage with, offering alternative modes of expression to audiences that extend beyond the academy. We hope the residency may offer a model for how other scholarly projects can engage with artistic practitioners as co-creators of knowledge.”

“‘Digital art’ is a form of practice whose boundaries are constantly shifting,” says Alice Yard co-director Nicholas Laughlin. “We received thirty-six applications for this inaugural residency, and the range of forms and technologies proposed by the artists was fascinating. Selecting just one of them was not easy, but we’re happy that the 2022 resident is an artist early in her career who we believe will truly benefit from the opportunity, and whose practice brings together elements of the virtual and the physical. We’re excited to experience and share the work that will come out of this residency.”

The Caribbean Digital conference (TCD) is an international event hosted annually at locations in the United States and the Caribbean since 2014. Alternating between larger conferences and smaller symposia, TCD has created a singular and consistent space of exchange for Caribbeanist digital scholars, consisting of traditional panels, roundtable conversations, skills-building workshops, and project show-and-tells.

Alice Yard is a contemporary art collective based at Granderson Lab in Belmont, Port of Spain, Trinidad and Tobago. Founded in 2006, Alice Yard curates and hosts artists’ projects and residencies, with the support of an international network of collaborators.

Art by Marina Shareef depicting a face shooting red curtains out of its eyes Eye-dentity Theft (2019) by Marinna Shareef