A catalogue representing a tribute to the late Bill Grace, artist, sculptor and ceramicist, will soon be in school libraries across the island.
The document, which depicts the commemorative exhibition held this year at the Barbados Community College (BCC) to honour his life and work, was endorsed today by Education Minister Ronald Jones, as he accepted 100 of them from Professor Henry Fraser, at the Elsie Payne Complex.
Minister Jones said by sharing the important ideas or ideals of Bill Grace, the catalogue would cause young people, with an interest in art, pottery, fine arts and graphic arts to research a lot more of what was local, both within the historical and contemporary framework and might lead them to venture further afield.
Admitting to being amazed at the quality of the various pieces contained in the catalogue, the Minister stressed that such research would afford them different perspectives.
???Our students, librarians and schools would be pleased about this work???I would want to continue to urge Barbadians, particularly young people, to write, to capture for posterity so much of what is happening in a dynamic way in their lives ??? the total society and country because they are participants in all of that endeavour, as well as to bring this to the minds of others and to share their perspective on things. When we have the time and when we have the opportunity, we should do things that would cause people to be reflective to enhance the quality of their lives,??? he opined.
Professor Henry Fraser, referring to Bill Grace as ???a very special artist???, said: ???He is kind of iconic at several levels because he is a potter who trained overseas, but came back to Barbados and worked with Barbadian clay in the Barbadian tradition using a potter???s wheel with amazing skill; using Barbadian clay and sourcing his ideas to an enormous extent from the geology and the culture of Barbados.???
Mr. Grace, who died at 61, was seen as ???an amazing man??? who was also a musician, humanist, preservationist, and a very social being. ???We???d like to get this catalogue into every single school library so that every child in Barbados can be inspired to continue the Barbadian tradition of pottery,??? Professor Fraser said.
Art historian and tutor in the Division of Fine Arts at the BCC, Allison Thompson, said the dissemination of the catalogues was an opportunity to document Bill???s work and allow others to know the full story. ???The full story becomes part of not only Bill???s work, but the story of Chalky Mount; of Earth Works of Red Clay; of the tradition of ceramics in Barbados that people are unaware of and that our students often don???t know exist,??? she said.