Artist Talk with George Camille from Seychelles
Is it your first participation to AfriKin Art exhibit?
Yes, it is my first exhibition in an Afrikin Art exhibition and it has been a great honor to have been invited to show my work in America for the first time.
What does it mean to you, a black artist?
Being part of the AfriKin Art exhibition will allow me as an artist living and working on an isolated island off the African coast to gain access to a wider audience as well as be part of a bigger art community that has a common agenda.
Why is it important, according to you, for Black Art to be celebrated during Black History Month?
Black Artists has gained tremendous recognition and visibility over the last few decades, but there is still a lot of challenges and obstacles to overcome and Black History Month presents the world with a constant reminder of the role and importance that Black Artists continue to play in the development of art on a global platform.
What will you be presenting at the exhibit?
I will be presenting three large acrylic paintings on canvas created over the last two years. One of the paintings, The company of strangers, was selected for the recent Dakar Biennale in Senegal.
Tell us more about yourself and your art.
I was born and continue to live and work on the Seychelles Islands, which is a small multi-racial and multi-cultural society which forms part of the African continent.
I love to experiment and work in many mediums and styles, including sculpture, collage on canvas, embossed metals and video installations, but over the last thirty-six years, etchings has become the medium for my more detailed and figurative work. Having my own press has allowed me to experiment with a range of intaglio print techniques, combining a variety of material and processes to create images which has shaped the development and presentation of my personal visual alphabet.
I was the grand prize winner of the Seychelles Biennale in 2017, and was selected to represent the Seychelles at the Venice Biennale in 2019. In 2022 I was selected to exhibit at the Beijing Biennale and the Dakar Biennale in Senegal.
Over the years I’ve exhibited extensively in Seychelles, the Indian Ocean Islands, Europe, Africa and China.
Who are some of the artists you’ve been influenced by or inspired by?
To name a few, my earliest influences were the French impressionist as well as Picasso and Dali because there were very few Black artists that were visible and whose work were accessible to young black artists. It was refreshing and a revelation to discover the work of Jean-Michel Basquiat in the nineties and since then the work of Sam Gilliam and Jacob Lawrence too.