Artist Dave Smith to exhibit at Central Bank, Popopstudios
Two exhibitions of work by veteran artist Dave Smith will open in Nassau during March.
A long awaited show of new paintings will open at The Central Bank of the Bahamas Art Gallery, while an exhibition of large format photographs of Nassau movie theatre marquees from the 1970’s and 1980’s, will open at Popopstudios International Center for the Visual Arts.
Smith established a presence on the local art scene over 30 years ago with a series of solo shows of socially conscious paintings, and was a frequent exhibitor with his contemporaries Brent Malone, Jackson and Stanley Burnside, Max Taylor and Antonius Roberts, playing a pivotal role in the development of Bahamian art. He is also one of the 11 artists featured in the widely acclaimed 2008 documentary film,’Artists of The Bahamas’.
Originally from England, Smith spent 17 years in The Bahamas as an art teacher, and now lives in California. Yet the islands continue to lure him back several times a year and the 12 new paintings in the upcoming show find him re-visiting familiar themes.
“The focus of my work revolves around themes which are essentially perennial anyway,”said the artist.”Our problematic interaction with social issues like crime, religion and consumerism remain with us-as does the sometime incongruous reality of our idyllic, post card shoreline.”
During Smith’s years in The Bahamas, he avidly photographed the underbelly of the Bahamian environment, with many of these images frequently providing research for his paintings. Of particular interest to the artist is a series of photographs he took, over a number of years, of Nassau movie theatre marquees. Many were reproduced in a self-published book several years ago, but 25 of these images have been made into limited editions of large format archival prints and will be seen for the first time in the show at Popopstudios in Chippingham.
“These images have always been special to me, but as time elapses, the images become not only more humorous, but also more poignant when read as a menu of the cultural offerings of the time,”said Smith.
Both shows offer thoughtful insights on Bahamian society and will run concurrently from March 1-April 1, with openings at the Central Bank of The Bahamas Art Gallery on Frederick St. at 6 p.m. on Friday March 11, and at Popopstudios International Center for the Visual Arts at 6 p.m. on Thursday March 17. The artist will be in attendance at both openings.