Graeme Mortimer Evelyn illustration

We came across the drawings and sculpture of Graeme Mortimer Evelyn, a Jamaican multi-media visual artist, musician and curator recently, a surprising fact given that he has won several large commissions and his artwork appears in numerous municipal buildings, sites of memory and places of worship as well as being displayed and collected in Princeton University's Center for African American Studies, Cornell University, Kensington Palace, The Royal Commonwealth Society, Museum in Docklands, Gloucester Cathedral, Watershed and M-Shed Bristol.

Evelyn's varied body of work is a subversion of the institutional. He comments on cultural social identity, politics and language, describing these narratives as forming “when fragments of relation, memory, society, identity and modernity, which seem disparate at first, come together to form a whole”. Evelyn has developed a reputation for creating work that is situated in municipal buildings, sites of memory and places of worship that subvert these settings and philosophies. His intention is that his art acts as a catalyst; attracting new audiences to seek alternative dialogues and challenging questions, enabling a democratisation of public spaces. Much of his work deals with Black history, reparation and reconciliation as well as societal conflict. In 2011, Evelyn was Artist-in-Residence at St. Stephen’s Church Bristol and commissioned to create a large scale permanent contemporary altarpiece entitled the Reconciliation Reredos. Set within one of the oldest churches in Bristol, historically significant as the harbour church that blessed every merchant slave vessel before their voyage; the Reconciliation Reredos is a contemporary artwork of universal reconciliation, that responds to the church’s past, reflects the voices of the city today while representing the potential of the future. The work has established Evelyn as the first ever Black British Artist to complete such a commission in Europe.

In addition to his art, Evelyn also works with film such as the video essay he made in 2007 entitled The Two Coins: Meditations on Trade. This poignant, factual and objective work was filmed staging imagined historical reenactments within UNESCO heritage sites and locations in Ghana, Mali, Malawi and the UK, documenting the dormant history of the Trans-Atlantic slave trade as silent meditation.

Evelyn continues to develop a new bodies of work. He is currently commissioned as Artist-in-Residence by the Diocese of London to create a Reredos - permanent large scale contemporary altarpiece - entitled The Eternal Engine for St Francis at the Engine Room in Tottenham Hale, the first new Anglican church to be built in the capital in almost 40 years.


Graeme Mortimer Evelyn line illustration of a woman
Graeme Mortimer Evelyn line drawing of a man/saint
Graeme Mortimer Evelyn line drawing of woman
Graeme Mortimer Evelyn abstract line drawing with three dots
Graeme Mortimer Evelyn abstract line drawing
Graeme Mortimer Evelyn portrait relief sculpture in primary colours
Graeme Mortimer Evelyn portrait relief sculpture white
Graeme Mortimer Evelyn circles relief sculpture multi-coloured
Graeme Mortimer Evelyn portrait relief sculpture afro picks
Graeme Mortimer Evelyn relief sculpture
Images | Graeme Mortimer Evelyn

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