Some of you may be wondering who is responsible for the killer art work and logo design for the True Jamaican Dancehall tour!? For those who are not familiar with her art work I would love to introduce the very talented Robin Clare.
So who is Robin Clare?
I’m an artist, originally from Jamaica. Having not lived on the island for a long while I use my art to keep connected to the culture and it helps me not to get too homesick.
What is it about dancehall that inspires you?
I have huge respect for it as a Jamaican art form and the opportunities it offers the youth of Ja when there are so few opportunities in other industries. As a dance form I’m blown away by the productivity and the creativity. There are new dances being created on a weekly basis and the dancer/choreographers perform them with genuine love for their art. I’m also very inspired by the positive way that movements like DanceJA and dancers like Latonya Style and Craig Black Eagle are promoting the dance and culture across the world. DanceJA is really doing great things to promote Jamaican culture and much respect goes out to it’s founder Latonya Style.
How did the link up with Latonya Style happen?
I publish a zine called Rice & Peas which is all about Jamaican culture on and off the island, for the 3rd issue I wanted to focus on dance so I contacted Latonya for an interview and things just went from there. We have collaborated on Stylish Moves, a publication that’s all about her signature ‘Stylish Moves’ dance steps with how to guides for each move, so far we’ve done 2 volumes. Each has instructions and illustrations for around a dozen moves and also some other cool stuff like dance advice from Latonya and guides on how to chat in patois. She’s a very creative lady and when the two of us put our heads together all sorts of cool stuff comes out. Our latest project is the Stylish Moves shop which offers phone cases and other items inspired by her signature style, with profits going towards DanceJa Cultural Centre. www.stylishmoves.bigcartel.com
How have people reacted to your work?
The reaction has been really good. There’s a really great close knit international dancehall community that’s very supportive. Also it’s been a great way to share the culture with people that don’t know that much about dancehall. I tend to focus on the dance culture most of all and bringing the two art forms together is a great starting point for people to explore more of of Jamaican culture.
What is your favorite Dancehall dance move?
Oh there are too many to just choose one! I really admire the flowing style of Bogle’s moves. The Dancehall Queen styles are amazing, I’m blown away by the athleticism of the dancers. I love the sexy confident style that Latonya brings to her choreography while keeping it classy. I love watching the male squads like Shady Squad, Black Eagles & Elite Team perform their choreographies too. Dutty Wine was the first dance I ever illustrated so maybe I would choose that one as it was the starting point for my creative output and I’ll always think of it fondly.
Where can people buy your art and find out more about you?
Thanks so much for your support Robin, keep going strong, we love what you do!