Copper alloy bracelet forms (known as Manilla/s) were recognized and used for currency as transactions from the end of 15th... Read More
Copper alloy bracelet forms (known as Manilla/s) were recognized and used for currency as transactions from the end of 15th century to the mid 20th century. Their metal content varied from copper to brass, most Manilla were manufactured in England or France and like trade beads, were used for trades with Africa. The local chiefs on the slave coast of West Africa traded their human cargo for many different commodities (Jaco, Manilla; Drogas Wave, 2018)
The memory of the past tells us what we owe to our future. This is an excavation of ancestry and wounds laid bare, juxtaposed with knowing and confronting the future. At some point the past must be acknowledged; even if the present is shaped by unspeakable tragedy, it is the wells from which future generations drink. We cannot move forward without resolve.
(The Trouvadore was a brigantine sailing under Spanish papers to Santiago, Cuba that ship wrecked on the Caicos Bank; Turks & Caicos in 1841)
This work serves as a part of a greater narrative of the illegal slave ship the Trouvadour on it's final journey and the last slaves to arrive in the Turks and Caicos islands. The Collection is titled: "Tears of the Trouvadore"
The compostion of the piece links the relationship of the possible royality of the captured slave, the connection to the British Kingdom and labours via the symbolism of tears; composed of salt and water. The tears also serve as a precursor to the sea that will transport the African to the "new world" and also represents her fear and sadness. The title of the piece harkens to the item traded for a slave and its weight.