APRIL 04, 2017 TO AUGUST 13, 2017

Jamaica is a tropical iceberg of which Bob Marley’s reggae is only the tip, sitting above an extraordinary originality that touches much more than music. Bringing together objects, images and rare films, this exhibition explores the multiple facets of its history.



Why an exhibition on Jamaican music?

Jamaica, a tiny island that produced one of the major musical currants of the second half of the 20th century.

To restore its rightful place in the history of black music, looking beyond the clichés to which it is too often reduced.  

The sound system, DJs, clashes, remixing, the twerk, etc. all originated in Jamaican music, and its musical inventions of the 1960s are key elements of most modern-day urban music, from rap to electro. 

Bob Marley, the first superstar to emerge from the Third World.

From slavery to Pan-Africanism: a history of decolonisation through music.Principles of the exhibition

A  7-part  chronological  and  thematic  tour  retracing  Jamaica’s  unique  musical  and  political evolution.

The  visual  side  of  Jamaican  music,  featuring  mural  art  from  the  streets  of  Kingston,  album covers, flyers, the graphic exuberance of Jamaica’s mobile street discos.

An exhibition that presents this rich cultural heritage thanks to exceptional pieces never before exhibited in Europe, on loan from Jamaican institutions such as the National Gallery in Kingston (Mallica “Kapo” Reynolds, Evadney Cruickshank, Sidney McLaren, Karl Parboosingh, etc.).

An exhibition that presents the extraordinary influence that Jamaican culture has had on music, graphic design, fashion and contemporary art, both in Jamaica and beyond (Tony McDermott, Xavier Veilhan, Nik Nowak, Leasho Johnson, Beth Lesser, Patrick Cariou, etc.).

Scenography by the architecture firm Encore Heureux, accentuating the architectural elegance in the graphic profusion of Jamaica’s musical genres.

Panzer sound system: dancehall is a weapon! 

For Jamaica, Jamaica!, German artist Nik Nowak has specially adapted his installation entitled Panzer (2011), inviting DJ Neil Case aka "Bass Mekanik” to compose a special soundtrack based on his dancehall favourites from the 1980s to today. 

Of Jamaican origin but based in Miami, Neil Case has worked as a sound engineer on reggae productions for Byron Lee, Barry Biggs and Tommy Cowan. He is primarily known for developing the Miami Bass style in the 1980s, a form of rap made famous by the group 2 Live Crew. 

© William Beaucardet