A sophisticated evening at Art Albany promotes local art
Last Friday evening, Albany residents and Nassau residents alike flocked to the luxury resort community to take part in the second ‘Art at Albany’, which showcased artwork from eleven local practicing artists in the deluxe cabanas around the Azul Pool.
On the heels of their first successful run earlier this year, the event is primarily an attempt to bring artists and the Albany community together to foster commissions and client relationships for the newly-constructed homes.
“As a new development we have now close to forty homes done, and in five years we’re going to have another one hundred or so done. That’s a lot of vacant walls,” points out Managing Director of Albany Jason Callender.
“So for those people to tap into local artists to fill their walls with Bahamian art is a big goal of mine.”
Indeed, points out Art Director of Albany Gillian Watson, the exchange would be beneficial to both parties and boost the local creative economy—especially as The Bahamas has so much to offer by way of locally produced art.
“We really wanted to create a space that we could promote local art so that when we had all these people building houses that needed to be furnished, they knew that there was a really beautiful, readily-available and vast set of art that was all different,” she says.
“We try to stay away from the stereotypical Bahamian art and really show people that we have a young, thriving creative art community.”
Against a backdrop of soothing tunes by the band “Jazz Etc.”, the eleven artists on display shared paintings, photography and sculpture in a variety of eye-catching aesthetics. In each cabana guests could view work by the artist and speak in depth with the artists themselves.
“I tell the artists that the evening is not about selling art, but about creating an intimate space where you can meet clients, show your portfolios, get to have a sense of what it is that you’re doing,” explains Watson. “I think that is almost more important than what artists are actually creating—the sense of the artistic vision and intention and story, and it makes the sale sometimes.”
The artists themselves—some of them second-time exhibitors—found the evening to be hugely helpful not only in making sales but also just in speaking with a different group of people about their artistic practice.
“I love the fact that Albany allows local artists to come and display their work,” says artist Anthony Morley. “The atmosphere, the ambiance, the set-up and the opportunity to sell to people who are actually art buyers and lovers, who can appreciate the high level of art here, means this is a good place to be.”
“I’m glad that my work will get exposure to people I don’t normally have contact with,” agrees artist Margot Bethel, who also points out that the event is also a great experience for local residents to attend as well.
“I’ve already had people who I do know see things they haven’t seen before. It’s exposure across the board—exposure to new clients, exposure to existing clients.”
Indeed, to hold such an event among the gorgeous grounds of the resort community allows for a sophisticated and elegant but laid-back atmosphere for such exchanges to take place.
“This place lends itself to a great vibe,” says Jason Callendar. “It’s a very special place. In my mind, Albany is a work of art.”
“I love the fact that we also have a bunch of local Bahamians who come out and see what we’ve done here at Albany, because people talk about it and not many people know that we exist, and if they do, there are a whole bunch of preconceptions that probably aren’t true,” he continues. “We want to embrace the local community.”
For more photos of this event, check out our online gallery at www.thenassauguardian.com.