Mark Robinson (BFA Painting, Edna Manley College) lives and works in St Thomas, Jamaica. He works in paint, drawing and mixed media, including collage and assemblage. As a self-proclaimed surrealist, he sees art as a form of social intervention and subscribes to the idea that art should comfort the disturbed and disturb the comfortable. His work was recently featured in the 2019 School of Visual Art Final Year exhibition at the Edna Manley College.
My aims are to juxtapose the origins of diasporic people and our current reality, by making links between movement and settlement throughout our cultural past and present. It is my philosophy that we as a diasporic people came from the sea, since we arrived at the shores of the Caribbean archipelago by crossing the Atlantic Ocean and Caribbean Sea as well and since much of our livelihood as people living in an archipelago is entirely dependent on the relationship we have with the sea.
Through my work I aim to express this surreal historical relationship with the sea which our culture is often so unaware of or even unwilling to acknowledge by making use of unconventional imagery which challenges traditional narratives of how we view the sea and transportation throughout our cultural context – with the congested roads of Kingston and Jamaica as a metaphor. In challenging the way we view our culture, we essentially challenge the way we view ourselves as people; bringing into question ideals of our identity and why we do things the way we do.