Dr. Carey Wallace, Executive Director of the Tourism Enhancement Fund (TEF), was pleased to lend his support to the opening of the fourth phase of the popular Downtown Kingston mural project, Paint the City. The project is supported by the Tourism Enhancement Fund (TEF), a division of the Ministry of Tourism, the Kingston and St. Andrew Municipal Corporation (KSAMC), Kingston Creative and Sherwin Williams Jamaica Limited. Eleven new murals will be added to the cultural tourism attraction of Water Lane by February 2024, bringing the total mural count to 57.
The goal is to create an Art District in Downtown Kingston to increase the economic, cultural and social viability of the communities in and around Downtown. The centre-piece of the Downtown Kingston Art District (DKAD) is a pedestrianised public art walkway on Water Lane, connecting two of Jamaica’s preeminent cultural anchor institutions which fall under the Institute of Jamaica (IOJ); namely the National Museum on East Street and the National Gallery of Jamaica (NGJ) on Orange Street. The new murals will be located on the stretch between King Street and Orange Street.“It means a lot to see the ideas move from paper to reality and to actually witness the artists’ work coming to life,” commented Kingston Creative’s Art District Project Manager Dan Thompson. “Inclusion is an important element in the project and we are working with community painters and the residents. One example is Mr. Harris McLean, a carpenter, resident in Water Lane for over 25 years, who has been very instrumental in the project, and inspirational to the artists too.”The project was co-curated by independent artists and professionals from the Edna Manley College of the Visual and Performing Arts, and the National Gallery of Jamaica. It will include artwork by the following artists; Pamella Chang, Lennox Coke, Dwayne Grant, Jordan Harrison, Kamaal Manboard, Delroy Millwood, Nakeha Shepherd, Deon Simone, Anthony “Taoszen” Smith, Paige Taylor and Rupert Tomlinson.The theme for the murals is “One Downtown”, an inspiring concept dedicated to reshaping the way this area of the city is perceived and to encouraging unity of mind, thought and vision among Downtown Kingston communities. The “One Downtown” movement goes beyond murals to deliver training and economic opportunities in several communities, working with the Development Bank of Jamaica (DBJ) and the Planning Institute of Jamaica (PIOJ). It seeks to use Jamaican culture to unite people around a common vision of a revitalised and safe city, fit to live, work and raise families.