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Festival Noel to sparkle

One can always count on fantastic local art being showcased at the Bahamas National Trust’s annual fundraising event, Festival Noel, in Freeport, Grand Bahama.

This year is no exception as Festival Noel highlights two young men — art teachers from New Providence, who will display their work in the Glory Harris Banks Gallery at the Rand Nature Centre for the gala affair on Friday, December 2.

Trevor Tucker and Marco Mullings headline the 17th Festival Noel.  The two men are the same age, attended the same high school and college and are both now high school art teachers.  They have also presented their vibrant works at many of the same shows and even presented two-man shows in 2006 and 2008.

Over the years, Festival Noel has afforded locals and regular visitors a chance to view the premier artists of the region.  Last year, Freeport students impressed attendees with the high caliber of their work, which became a springboard for several young artists to further their studies in art.

“It is the creative process that drives me and the use of color that embodies me,” says Mullings, who has been drawing from as far back as he can remember.

Mullings has a very strong Junkanoo base and this is where a lot of his roots are planted.  Starting at a young age and being a part of this cultural movement, he always found himself immersed in art and more importantly surrounded by design, patterns and color.

The 34-year-old attended St. Augustine’s College (SAC), then obtained a degree in Fine Art and a diploma in Secondary Art Education from the College of the Bahamas.  He has returned to teach at SAC, molding the creative minds of young students for the past 10 years as he seeks to inspire the future generation of Bahamian talent.

Tucker, is also a high school art teacher.

“Art is one of the greatest forms of release and self expression.  My inspiration comes from many sources, with nature and religion being the two strongest elements.  This is expressed in the use of strong compositions, bold colors and expressive brush strokes.  My brushstrokes are usually very fluid, and my preferred technique is a combination of layering colors and textures in order to create a more vibrant image.  Over the years, I have grown to love acrylics more because the bright colors and fast-drying qualities which allow me to work at a quicker, more expressive pace.”

As well as attaining a degree in Fine Art and a diploma in Secondary Art Education from the College of the Bahamas, Tucker continued his art education at Louisiana Tech University where he graduated with a bachelor’s degree in Graphic Design in 2001.

Both young men have displayed their works in many shows and achieved accolades and honors for their talents.  They have both received honorable mentions at the Central Bank Art Shows and are perennial favorites at the Bahamas National Trust’s annual Wine and Art Show.

This year, Festival Noel promises to be a sparkling event, providing attendees with the opportunity to not only view the fantastic art work, but also enjoy a tasting of a wide variety of wines, provided by Bristol Wine & Spirits.

In addition, Festival Noel will continue its promotion of the future top chefs by showcasing local students in the Student Chef Noel contest.  Culinary students at local high schools and colleges present their best dishes for all attendees to sample while they enjoy the wine and fine art.

Proceeds from the event will go towards improvement projects within Grand Bahama’s national park system.

Tickets for Festival Noel will be available at Bristol Wine & Spirits or at the Rand Nature Centre. For more information about the event contact the Rand Nature Centre at 352-5438 or Leigh Termath, event coordinator at 351-9157.

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