FRESH MILK and the Instituto Buena Bista Present: Creatives in Conversation

By Katherine Kennedy Wednesday, November 14th, 2012 Categories: ARC Partners, Artist Talk, Updates

Join FRESH MILK and the Instituto Buena Bista (IBB) via Ustream this Friday November 16th between 6-7pm for CREATIVES IN CONVERSATION, part of their ongoing Satellite Programme. This project, conceptualized by Barbadian art historian Natalie McGuire, recognises the internet as a medium where people in the Caribbean have been able to research what is happening regionally in the arts, but wants to take it a step further and proactively make the internet a space for critical dialogue and exchange.

Katherine Kennedy will be interviewing visual artists and co-founders of the IBB David Bade and Tirzo Martha at the IBB in Curaçao, and you are invited to send in your comments and questions as the interview is occurring. Be sure to tune in to to be a part of this interactive event, as we continue to link our Caribbean arts community.


David Bade 

David Bade’s (Curacao, 1970) multi‐talented career lifted off in 1993, when he ended up as one of the finalists in the Dutch Prix, the Rome award for drawing. Starting with drawing, his work developed into total environments built up out of installations and sculptures, in which his love for drawing (and painting) still plays a dominant role. The content of his work adds up to a poetic and critical reflection on society, combined with our collective memory and his personal views on modern life in which a playful use of language draws the viewer into an eclectic world of fiction and reality.

Initially trained as a teacher, Bade divides his time between the studio and his strong drive to connect to the outside world. From 1998, after an almost delirious project with 300 teenagers in Museum Jan Cunen in the Dutch city of Oss, community workshops in public space have become an important way of involving the public in constructing his environments built out of ‘dead materials’, words and imagination. Since returning to his island of birth, Curacao, Bade has been working for the Instituto Buena Bista (of which he is a co‐founder), scouting young talent from the island, supporting their future in the artistic field and using his role to defend and mediate the arts.

Tirzo Martha

Tirzo Martha’s urge and necessity to create art has its origin not in his ability to be creative, but in his humanitarian and social engagement. As a child, Martha was not a drawer or an active creative being. He was always reacting critically on the conditions surrounding him in his neighbourhood. The decaying social conditions in his beloved neighbourhood Buena Vista had been bothering him day after day, creating a feeling of unrest in him.

Although he came from a good home where he had everything, he was still confronted with the reality of his neighbourhood on the streets and in his school. A reality that didn’t fit with the way he experienced his surroundings. This collective of contradictions kept on growing inside him to heights that he wasn’t able to control anymore. This brought him closer to what he had already seen in the past; Art. He saw in art the space and the infinite possibilities that could strengthen his voice and drive for what he wanted to communicate.

Just like an anthropologist, he investigated all the details that completed the big puzzle of existence of the people. Besides all the oral and physical information that he was gathering, he was also getting visual info that would be the departing point of his works. He considered the living conditions and the way people coped with their space and objects as visually strong enough to visualize their dreams, hopes, disappointments, visions and state of mind. He would translate all the information into ideas and structures that would become his body of work. This brought him to the installations, videos and performances that are very close to the living conditions and structures of the people. Depictions of chaos, consisting of objects, materials and emotions are brought together in a baroque molding to produce a rough composition carrying the beauty of the people’s hopes and dreams. A voice that is familiar but still had this unknown sound, Martha does his performances and builds his installations in public spaces, most of the time in neighbourhoods where he thought that his work would fit in perfectly.

Katherine Kennedy

Katherine Kennedy is an artist and writer. She graduated in 2011 from Lancaster University, UK with a degree in Creative Arts; her combined major of Fine Art and Creative Writing helped develop her keen interests in both visual and literary pursuits. She has won awards for her artwork and writing in her home Barbados, and has exhibited internationally in London. Since returning home, she has remained immersed in creativity, completing a local artist residency and contributing to ARC Magazine of Contemporary Caribbean Art by writing for their online forum. Katherine is the Assistant to Director on the FRESH MILK Art Platform Inc., in addition to producing work as a sculptor and installation artist.

The IBB. Image by Katherine Kennedy

About the IBB:

The idea for an institute for contemporary art in Curaçao existed for a long time in the minds of visual artists David Bade and Tirzo Martha, but in 2006 the time was right to take that step. They gave a firm base to the Instituto Buena Bista, that was built on three pillars that give the institute its strength; the development of young talent through an orientation course, a thorough program of artist in residencies and a network in the field of education and research. Martha and Bade support the IBB from their own professional framework and offer the students an intensive year of learning experiences and complete dedication. The IBB offers upcoming artists a framework that makes it possible for them to find their way to a professional career in the arts, and since its inception they have already accompanied three levies of young talents to art schools or applied art schools in the Netherlands and the Caribbean region.

The Fresh Milk Art Platform Inc. is a Caribbean non-profit, artist-led, inter-disciplinary organization that supports creatives and promotes wise social, economic, and environmental stewardship through creative engagement with society and by cultivating excellence in the arts.


Katherine Kennedy
Katherine Kennedy

Katherine Kennedy is an artist and writer. She graduated in 2011 from Lancaster University, UK with a degree in Creative Arts (Fine Art and Creative Writing). Katherine is an Editor & the Assistant to Director at ARC Magazine and the Communications & Operations Manager at the FRESH MILK Art Platform Inc., in addition to producing work as a sculptor and installation artist. Katherine has participated in programming at the Instituto Buena Bista (IBB), Curaçao; The Vermont Studio Center, USA; Casa Tomada, Brazil and Akademie Schloss Solitude, Germany.