Three Caribbean Artists provides a rare glimpse into the lives of Jose-Maria Capricorne, Neslon Carrilho and Philippe Zanolino, three Caribbean artists, their upbringing, work and how they became established and well-known artists. Caribbean art is strong, passionate and filled with contradictions. As are the lives of these three men, who are the main characters in the book. Their story relates to the island of Curaçao, where folklore, magic and reality happily co-exist. It also reflects the impact of slavery, racism and immigration, common to the history of the Caribbean. Equipped with their cultural background, skills derived from being craftsmen plus ample creativity and grit, they each conquered significant challenges encountered in their lives. The story underscores the tremendous value of art and an art education. All three artists passionately contribute to educating people on the importance and benefits of art in their own respective ways.
Two international art historians, Susan Wilczak from the United States and Marianne de Tolentino from Santo Domingo, tell the story of the lives of each of these three artists and what has formed them. In addition, an overview is provided of art developments in the Caribbean, an area that has proven challenging to capture and denominate art-wise. The artist’s stories gravitate around the importance of their respective skills, some obtained through teachings and others self-taught.
Monique van Herksen was born and raised on the island of Curaçao.She is the daughter of Irene van Herksen, a Curaçao-based art teacher, who recognized that these three artists and their lives represent the transforming power of art and an art education. She dedicates this book to Irene van Herksen.