After nine weeks at the greenhouse Cultural Identity: Seven of the Best has come to a close. The third in an annual series of exhibitions at the greenhouse, Cultural Identity: Seven of the Best brought together seven students from all over the island in a collection of work of the highest quality. Each year Guernsey Arts Commission draws students’ work from the summer end-of-year shows at Grammar, Elizabeth College, Ladies College and the College of Further Education.
This year, Eric Snell – local artist, teacher, and chairman of GAC’s Public Art Sub-Committee – took on the challenge of selecting the finest student artists from these local higher education schools. “The process of reviewing all the students’ work began earlier this summer when I spent many hours going from one student show to another. I didn’t set out with a particular concept in mind, but as I started to select various students’ work, I noticed that there was a common theme running through each piece. It was a theme of ‘identity’.”
It is this theme that gave the show its name of ‘Cultural Identity’. However, what is Guernsey’s ‘cultural identity’? And in what way does Guernsey affect its inhabitants outlook on culture? Eric raised similar questions himself. “This started to make me think about how one’s society and connection with a particular place informs one’s ideas and work, and how at the age of 17 or 18, one is also striving to find one’s own identity.”
The seven students that were selected were Beth Brehaut, Fanella Knight, Maggie Lowe, Theo Morgan, Ebby Mosgrove, Nick Ozard and Nick Parkes. Each of these individuals’ work are a visual statement informing us of the tough journey that each of them has gone through in an attempt to discover their own cultural identity. However, Eric points out “The debate goes beyond the mere individual because this exhibition, this collective group of works shown together, should make us realise that in this cyber, globalised and multi-cultural age in which we live, Guernsey as a place is also in need of rediscovering its own cultural identity and own direction”.
Cultural Identity: Seven of the Best ran from 13th September – 10th November 2013 at the greenhouse
The next exhibition at the greenhouse will open on Friday 22nd November 2013 and is titled “5 Years On”