Fragments of Epic Memory, a major exhibition exploring the art and legacy of the Caribbean, opens September 1 at the AGO.
Few regions across the globe better capture the potent complexity of the African Diaspora than the Caribbean. Its unique patchwork – of histories, landscapes and cultural influences – symbolizes both the radical imagination of its people and the footprint of colonization. This fall, the AGO will explore the past, present and future of the Caribbean by immersing visitors in the powerful art it has inspired. Opening September 1, the new major exhibition Fragments of Epic Memory features hundreds of images from the AGO’s Montgomery Collection of Caribbean Photographs, alongside a range of other modern and contemporary works by artists of Caribbean descent.
The inaugural exhibition from the AGO’s new department, Arts of Global Africa and the Diaspora, Fragments of Epic Memory has been curated by the department’s head, Julie Crooks. Its title is derived from Derek Walcott’s 1992 Nobel Lecture, The Antilles: Fragments of Epic Memory, and serves as an astute description of the journey visitors will take through the exhibition. It begins with the advent of commercial photography in the region (1840s–1950s), then introduces visitors to a range of exceptional modern and contemporary works related to the Caribbean, organized thematically.