Jamaica Street Artists is one of the largest artist-lead studios outside of London. The studio is housed in a grade II listed former carriageworks – an iconic landmark located just off the well-known Stokes Croft area of central Bristol. Since the studios began in 1993, this colourful area has seen riots, redevelopment, rocketing house prices and Banksy, but its cutting edge character endures and continues to lure artists from around the world to this intriguing creative space.
Jamaica Street Studios is an amazing building that still retains the character and atmosphere of its former life. Going up the stairs to the three floors of artists’ studios, you pass the old metal lift running up through the building (sadly not working, but useful storage space for some of the artists’ work). Looking out from the studio windows reveals spectacular views of the Stokes Croft area from unfamiliar perspectives. The whole place has a very special feel which is only enhanced by the creative activities that go on inside.
Frustratingly for the artists, the future of the Jamaica Street Studios space has never been entirely certain. Over the past year Jamaica Street Artists has run a dynamic fundraising campaign to safeguard their future in that great space. A new lease has now been secured, but the long-term aim remains to purchase the building in partnership. After an amazing 20 years in the building, it would be a great to know that the Jamaica Street Studios could stay around for many more years to come.
Jamaica Street Artists’s ethos is to recruit new graduates alongside professional artists ensuring that Jamaica Street Artists support emerging creative talent from the region. The success of this environment can be demonstrated through our artists’ diverse achievements, with individuals regularly exhibiting across the UK and abroad, achieving success in national competitions and prizes, and winning exciting new commissions and clients. Over recent years, Jamaica Street Artists have held group exhibitions at Bristol City Museum and Art Gallery and St George’s, Bristol, and individual artists continue to find success exhibiting across the UK and abroad.
Jamaica Street Artists is a diverse group made up of fine artists (including: Andrew Hood, Elaine Jones, Karen Edwards, Philip Munoz, Abigail McDougall, Karin Krommes, Onela Keal, Abigail Reed, Ant Garratt, Dan Parry-Jones, Vera Boele-Keimer, Rose Sanderson, Anouk Mercier, Janie George, Romina, Berenice Canet, Dan Ablitt, Adrian Sykes), illustrators and animators (such as Serena Curmi, Tom Mead, Teresa Murfin, Emma Dibben, Bjorn Rune Lie, Christopher Wright, Hannah McVicar, Kate Evans, Anna Higgie, Øivind Hovland, Louis Neubert), filmmakers and photographers (Mark Kidel, Trish Lock, Jessa Fairbrother), installation artists and sculptors (Jan Blake, Trish Lock, Rose Vickers, Ria Wilcox, Hugo Helene), textile and jewellery artists (Hatty Powis, Helen Williams). This diversity ensures an eclectic and exciting mix in group exhibitions, and allows artists to collaborate and share contacts across mediums.
For anyone joining the group of artists based at Jamaica Street Studios, Jamaica Street Artists offer assistance with marketing, links to work opportunities, shared resources, informal mentoring and peer support. They also promote artists exhibitions and events through our website, social networking and a new monthly newsletter. They encourage artists to become involved in the studio as an organisation and there is a vibrant energy at JSA ensuring that support and success is infectious, a quality which JSA are eager to maintain.
JSA Open Studios 2013
Over the weekend of 5th-7th July, all 36 Jamaica Street Artists – printmakers, illustrators, film makers, sculptors and fine artists – welcome you into their studios to celebrate their 20th anniversary in the heart of Bristol’s Cultural Quarter. You will have the chance to step into the Grade II listed former carriageworks for a view of life at the studios. You can meet current artists, see their work and discover the impact Jamaica Street has had on artists and the community over two decades. There will be artwork available to buy for all budgets, as well as a Mini Canvas Auction on Sunday evening (4-6pm), to give you the opportunity to help preserve one of Bristol’s most cherished art establishments.
To find out more about Jamaica Street Artists see their website: http://www.jamaicastreetartists.co.uk