Collecting Art in the Anglophone Caribbean: The Case of Post-Independence Jamaica

Written from the perspective that major art collections are important and revealing cultural artifacts and historical documents, this essay examines institutional, corporate, and private collection practices in post-independence Jamaica. The case studies illustrate how the history of art collecting in Jamaica mirrors the history of Jamaican art itself, as well as the changing ideas about art and culture as Jamaica moved from Independence in 1962 to the contemporary era. The case studies also help us to understand how wealth, power, class, race, and other social factors have operated and been contested in postcolonial Jamaica, generally, and in the specific context of the Jamaican art world.