Rex Dixon & Patricia Mohammed Paintings and Book Launch
August 19, 2017 -
Authors: Patricia Mohammed and Rex Dixon
With Drawings by Rex Dixon
Publishing Information: October 2016, Hansib Publishers, Hertfordshire, United Kingdom
216 pages, Soft cover, Colour illustrations
Rex Dixon, painter and scholar Patricia Mohammed take up the lighter side of a global education in a life together of companionship and travel. They curate memories over two decades - with humour and pathos, combining text, sometimes nonsense rhyme, and with illustration – of encounters from Northern Ireland, Australia, India and Namibia, from the Caribbean, London and The Hague. This is idiosyncratic experience and aesthetic feel of place. The book covers periods of sojourn or travel for research or work in sixteen countries including Jamaica, Trinidad and Northern Ireland where the authors have resided for considerable periods.
Rex Dixon lived and worked in the painting department, then University of Ulster in York Street, Belfast in the early eighties. Having met and married in Jamaica they have made summer visits each year for nearly two decades to Ballygally on the Antrim coast with friends artist Graham Gingles and scholar/artist model Jude Stephens. Dixon has also been taken by the James Wray Gallery in James Street South, Belfast and has had two one-person shows and been represented in mixed shows through this gallery. The book contains over 85 paintings of Dixon printed in colour.
The title of the book is a pastiche of Robert Louis Stevenson’s Travels with a Donkey (1879) and Graham Greene’s Travels with my Aunt (1970), neither reference literal but nonetheless some parallels may be drawn. It is an autobiographical record of a creative and intellectual partnership of over two decades captured through essays, vignettes and poetry, but what makes it different is that as an artist Rex absorbs emotion and event in line, tone and colour. The combination of humour and pathos makes this an eminently readable book, great for the traveller and the bedtime read as it is presented in bite-sized chunks for the busy reader.
Airline Magazine Caribbean Beat book reviewer had this to say: “Whether they contemplate the sobering realities of quotidian life in Haiti, or offer letters and tributes to the figures who have touched their twinned lives (as in the moving “Letter to Vincent”, the master painter van Gogh), the views in Travels with a Husband embrace the unknown. Avoiding the prescriptive, this memoir in passport stamps circumnavigates stations of the globe through the ebb and flow of seasons, political affiliations, shifting languages, and personal passions. Allowing the reader in with humour-leavened humility and the possibility of a new horizon peeking around each corner, here is a guide for all sojourners of both vast regions and domestic plains”
About the Authors:
Rex Dixon was born in 1939 in London, England. After teaching in the New University of Ulster in Belfast, Northern Ireland for several years, he came to Jamaica in 1985 to teach at the Edna Manley College for the Visual and Performing Arts. He has held numerous one-person exhibitions in Kingston, Port of Spain and abroad and his paintings are in the permanent collection of the National Gallery of Jamaica, Wolverhampton Art Gallery, and numerous private collections. He gave up teaching to paint full time in 1997. His work can be seen at James Wray Gallery in Belfast and Soft Box Studios in Port of Spain.
Born in Trinidad and Tobago in the West Indies, Patricia Mohammed has studied or worked in the United Kingdom, The Netherlands, Jamaica, Trinidad and the United States. She is a scholar and filmmaker and currently Professor of Gender and Cultural Studies at the University of the West Indies in Trinidad. She has published widely in both these fields. Among her books are Gender Negotiations among Indians in Trinidad (Palgrave, 2001) and Imaging the Caribbean: Culture and Visual Translation (Macmillan, 2010). She is an experimental documentary filmmaker producing and directing fourteen films of which Coolie Pink and Green and City on the Hill are award winning and have been screened internationally.