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Director of the National Art Gallery of The Bahamas (NAGB) Amanda Coulson answers this week's 20 Questions from Guardian Arts&Culture.
1. What's been your most inspirational moment in the last five years?
The One Family tribute to Jackson Burnside on Bay Street, Boxing Day Junkanoo 2011, without a doubt. It was the first time I saw the topic of "art" addressed directly in the costumes, with dancing portraits, palettes, paintbrushes... It was amazing! All the things dear to Jackson's heart brought to life again in this our ultimate Bahamian art form... it made me think about what my mission was here, in returning home. That moment made me realize how much the gallery had to open up its doors so much wider to the community. On the opening night of our first show, including some of those costumes, we had a rush out and I was intensely moved to see people from all walks of life celebrating together and going into the gallery as if it was their own.
2. What's your least favorite piece of artwork?
Anything shallow or facile, whether it's all craft and no concept or all concept and no craft. Great art - or even merely good art - requires not only technique but also deep thought and a meaningful goal.
3. What's your favorite period of art history?
Aside from the present moment, which is the most exciting and vital, it would have to be 16th century Venetian painting, the masters such as Giorgone, Mantegna, Titan, Tintoretto and Veronese. Although I do have a soft spot for Caravaggio as well, who was more from the Roman school (and I'd like to point out that they were all considered extremely radical and shocking in their time!)
4. What are your top 5 movies of all time?
Antonioni's "Zabriskie Point", of course! Just kidding... If time allows I do love going to the movies and I can enjoy a big silver screen epic as much as an independent production or an animation flick with my family. So, it really could be anything from "Apocalypse Now" to "Lord of the Rings" to "Juno" to "Shrek", depending on my state of mind. My top Bahamian movie is "Children of God" by Kareem Mortimer.
5. Coffee or tea?
Tea in the UK and coffee in Italy. Here I'd rather have a fresh ginger lemonade (or a Switcha!). Always go for what the locals do best!
6. What book are you reading now?
"The World Without Us" by Alan Weisman. It's a book that elucidates how fast nature would take over again if humans would cease to exist, but also explains what can never be reborn, thanks to the destruction we have wrought on our planet. It's a book that gives you great respect for Mother Nature. I'm also flipping through "Caribbean: Crossroads of the World" an exhibition catalogue from a show that was in NY across three museums. There is a copy in our library if anyone from the public wants to come and read it too!
7. What project are you working on now?
I am working on several ... "The John Beadle Project", which opens on April 25 at the NAGB, as well as "Master Artists of The Bahamas", a traveling exhibit that was in Iowa and Florida, opening the same night. Since we plan our calendar though a few years in advance I am already researching the Brent Malone Retrospective we hope to have at the end of 2014; "40 years of Bahamian Painting" for the 40th this summer... the list really goes on and on...
8. What's the last show that surprised you?
A Felix Gonzales-Torres retrospective in Frankfurt a couple of years ago. He was a Cuban-American contemporary artist that died in 1996 in Miami from AIDS-related complications. His practice was very conceptual and, first of all, I thought I knew the work so well that I would be bored by another retrospective and, secondly, I thought it was fairly straightforward, a bit of a one-trick pony. This show, however, was curated by another contemporary artist and choreographer and he completely revitalized the work and made it so relevant and powerful. I took my kids to the show and they completely engaged with these very deep, very adult themes of love and loss, of our singularity but also how we are part of a greater whole. It was pretty amazing.
9. Saxons, One Family, Valley Boys or Roots?
10. If you had to be stranded on one Family Island which one would it be?
Eleuthera. It's where both my family hail from originally and where my husband proposed to me.
11. What's the most memorable artwork you've ever seen?
I get to list five movies and one artwork? Not fair! Picasso's "Guernica" in Madrid, which I was able to see at night with no other people in the gallery at the Reina Sofia museum in Madrid, was extremely memorable; it's one of the few overly-reproduced artworks that is not a disappointment in the flesh. The Rothko Chapel in Houston made me really understand how abstract art could connect you to the infinite and I found that a very moving, spiritual experience. Watching Christian Marclay's 24-hour video "Clock"; the full room of Monet's water-lilies at the Orangerie in Paris; Titian's "The Flaying of Marsyas"... sorry I need a top 100!
12. Which artist do you have a secret crush on?
Well, it wouldn't be much of a secret if I shared it in the paper now, would it? But to ease everyone's imagination let's say: Giotto!
13. If you could have lunch with anyone who would it be?
It would be my husband, who I do not see alone often enough. But if not him, it would be one of four great women: Jane Austen, Florence Nightingale, Tina Fey or my mother, who passed when our first daughter was born. As a mother myself now, I find I have a lot of things to apologize for!
14. Who do you think is the most important Bahamian in the country's history?
Always the next baby to be born. We are a country with a longer future than a history and we mustn't forget that.
15. Who is your favorite living artist?
Whoever the last one was to really completely surprise me. That can happen anywhere and by anybody. It can happen at the NE6, at the MoMa or in the studio of an (as yet) unknown artist. To keep the mind open is the true challenge.
16. Sunrise or Sunset?
The golden rays of the late afternoon sun until it drops over the horizon have always been my favorite hours and colors of the day.
17. What role does the artist have in society?
Artists are visionaries and inquisitors. They have to ask difficult questions, form ideas and create images which are ahead of their times. Good art will be understood and proven by future generations and very seldom appreciated by the present.
18. What's your most embarrassing moment?
Asking my husband (who is a diehard romantic to my hardheaded realist), really sarcastically, "What? Are you going to propose or something now?" right before he actually did propose. The fact that he still did is a testament to his patience with me.
19. What wouldn't you do without?
20. What's your definition of beauty?
A smile after a moment of despair, the sparkle in the eyes of enlightenment, a gentle touch in a moment of need, a single note of love struck in the right chord. I think we are often too caught up in traditional notions of physical beauty to see the inherent beauty of a gesture or a spirit. Confucius said: "Everything has beauty, but not everyone sees it."
The Bahamas is missing out on potential jobs in the technology industry, according to a boutique architectural and interior design company.
Alex Holden, brand manager at Bahamian-owned SugarApple Studio, said the company recognized a gap in the market and decided to capitalize on it.
"There are countries like India that the rest of the world outsources cheap labor in those sectors, but I find that we are undersupplying in that regard. I feel like we could be supplying more and outsourcing more to other countries," he revealed.
The company's latest venture is an intense eight-week 3D Studio Max Training Course beginning at the end of the month. Holden told Guardian Business that the course is designed for persons who are interested in conceptual design, architecture, gaming level design, 3D
animations, film VFX and realtime apps.
"We are aiming to provide the course to architectural students at The College of The Bahamas, or anyone who is interested in video game design. It can be used for gaming, animation and for those looking to get in the movie industry," Holden noted.
He added that the $500 course will span over an eight-week period, equating to eight two-hour sessions, once per weekend.
Despite being open for only two years, Holden said business for the Fort Lauderdale-based operation has been steady. One area of business that has been booming for SugarApple Studio has been architectural projects. He pointed out that this field is already a successful industry in The Bahamas.
"So far, we have done a lot of architectural work for some big clubs in southern Miami, one in Dubai and another in Moscow. We are now undertaking major projects here in Nassau," Holden said. "We are looking to get more projects and continue to give The Bahamas quality architectural work."
Holden did admit to Guardian Business that the animation side of the business has not been nearly as successful as the architectural side. He believes that Bahamian society hinders that development, as labor is often funneled into the country's more regulated industries.
"In terms of there being a market for animation, I really don't think that it exists, but I do believe that there is a desire to have one."
He continued, "For example, if you were to talk to any 10-year-old child that has watched a Pixar animated movie, they will probably want to know how it is made and if they can do it themselves."
Holden shared that the course's primary focus is to provide a service that is drastically being undersupplied to Bahamians.
"It (the course) will draw attention to our services, so I believe it will have some positive side effects for marketing of our animation services," he added. "We saw a gap in the market and felt like we needed to supply it at a very affordable price for all."
A person who does great deeds but receives little or no recognition for those deeds is usually referred to as an unsung hero. In that vein, for seven years, Kingsway Academy has recognized students who exemplify the school's theme to be driven, but to also make a difference without seeking any reward. They refer to those students as unsung heroes.
And this year, the awards went to Aleandro Morris, a 16-year-old 11th grade student in the senior boy's division, Trudy-Ann Brown, a 15-year-old 11th grade student in the senior girl's division, Tyreke Butler, a 14-year-old ninth grade student in the junior boy's division and Hanna Dixon, a 13-year-old eighth grade student in the junior girl's division.
The school's student body voted for the winners via a secret ballot. The voting process was not based on academics, athletics or popularity. Nomination was based on the student's godliness, helpfulness and kindness. And nominees are not revealed until the actual Unsung Heroes ceremony. All nominees are escorted up a red carpet before their student body, with family present, at which time the top eight students are revealed, and winners selected in each category.
Aleandro, who is only in his second year at the school on an academic scholarship described his nomination as surprising.
"Being the person that I am, I don't look for all the extra attention, so it was surprising," he said.
The 11th grade student said he believed his peers nominated him because he exemplified leadership skills and because he tries to be a role model.
"Even at this age we have a lot of temptations and peer pressure and I just try to encourage them going forward," he said.
Also an honor roll student with a 3.5 grade point average, Aleandro said getting a good education means everything to him and that everything else is secondary. He aspires to attend college to pursue studies in mechanical engineering.
And he believes that you can't judge a person on where they come from but that
people have to judge them based on where they're headed.
Trudy-Ann, the senior girls division winner said her nomination and win, along with her peers meant that they showed Christian-like qualities, stands out from the crowd, has good leadership qualities and can prove everyone who looks down on them wrong.
"I have good Christian character and always put God first. I am always helpful, caring, sincere, responsible, loving, and I have a lot of confidence, and I show respect to my peers and authority," she said.
The 3.7 grade point average student, who has attended Kingsway since seventh grade aid that having a good academic standing is one thing, but that having a good personality is another thing. She says good academics shows how focused a person is in school but personality shows who they are inside and their capabilities as far as what they want to be in life.
"Academics and education are my second priority in life. My first priority is God," said Trudy-Ann. "To me you have to do good in school, and going to a private school you really shouldn't waste your parents' money. You want to be successful and strive to do good because at the end of the day, an education is what you're going to live off and help it to be brighter. Always put God first in your life, don't watch the crowd and say you want to be like them. You can be different, and that helps you to be successful. Once you have Christ in you, you can accomplish anything that you want to accomplish in life."
Tyreke, the junior boy winner believed his peers nominated him because he's trustworthy, believes in God and is a Christian. He believes he got their vote because he takes pride in his work and is confident.
He said the nomination and win humbled him. He had been nominated in 2012 as well.
"It just makes me want to get closer to God and to just continue to do well in my work and to be an example for my peers which is why I live by the quote 'Hard work beats talent when talent doesn't work hard'. I live by that quote and continue to work hard everyday knowing that I have a goal," he said.
Hanna, the winner in the junior girl division believes she was nominated by her peers because she always believes in herself and that she can do anything she wants to do, and because she's always trying to do better and pushing herself to get ahead of the game and the class, while at the same time trying to help her peers academically in any way that she can.
"It felt good to win. I was surprised and excited at the same time. I was just really glad that my peers chose me," said Hanna.
Her advice to her peers is to keep doing what they're doing, always try to help each other, and to be kind to each other, and that the end result may be that they may one day be nominated for the unsung hero award.
During the ceremony this year that is the highlight of the school year for many students, characters from the movie "Transformers" -- Decepticons, Megatron, Optimus Prime and Bumble Bee took over the school's campus in search of the cube. Student actors battled for the "cube" which represented the source of power for the godly characters of unsung heroes.
Kingsway Academy's Unsung Hero Awards was celebrated under the theme "Transformers, Driven To Make a Difference," which is an extension of the school's theme for the academic year, "Driven to Lead, Succeed and Make a Difference".
Twenty-five students were nominated and recognized for their transforming ability to change the lives of their peers through kindness, thoughtfulness, lending a helping hand, unselfishness and godly influence.
But not every nominee could claim the top prize and as a result, a runner-up was named. In the case of the senior girl division, the voting was so stiff that a tie had to be declared between Jade Brice and Felicia Knowles. Khameron Seymour was the runner-up in the senior boy division; Louis Johnson was the winner in the junior boy division, with Kara Rolle, the runner-up in the junior girl division.
Imagine a home without a television. Imagine having more than a month without watching any television or even going to the movie theater. Imagine having teenage children with no interest in watching television. Imagine having just one entire day when all televisions in the country will be off. Do you think we would survive?
While the television provides positive information and has become a meaningful part of our everyday existence, it is not imperative that we spend all the time we do watching the news or our favorite television shows. Do you realize that many people who watch the news channels hours every day become cynical, angry, skeptical and even physically ill. Too much of the news can drive you crazy.
More than 15 years ago I proposed in an article that each family have a television blackout month. I stressed that too many families are being dictated to by the television. They allow their children to freely watch anything at anytime. The hooked-on-television children spend very little hours gaining meaningful rest and sleep at the most appropriate times. In many homes, school-aged children stay up until the wee hours of the morning watching television. They fall asleep tired and drained, only to be awakened by another dosage of TV stimulation.
A 2006 report by the Kaiser Family Foundation states that 74 percent of infants and toddlers watch TV before the age of two. With on-demand services, 24-7 cable kid channels, and heaps upon heaps of baby-oriented programming, we now have constant access to media that specifically targets very young children. So there's more TV than ever, more warnings than ever, and certainly more confusion than ever before.
The problem I have with indiscriminate television viewing is that it is one of Satan's most powerful tools that he uses to infiltrate the mind with all kinds of unhealthy thoughts, images and actions. Too often children are prematurely introduced to subjects that they are not emotionally or intellectual ready to understand. These messages are repeated over and over teasing the child's curiosity and oftentimes changing behavior. Even adults are being affected negatively with the overdose of television, and especially violent television.
A 2002 study about television and violence revealed that watching just one hour of television a day can make a person more violent towards others, according to a 25-year study. In some circumstances, TV watching increases the risk of violence by five times. The new research indicates the effect is seen not just in children, as has been suggested before, but in adults as well (Allison Motluk, The New Scientist).
It is my view that if we have less television viewing in our nation we would have less violence. It is time for another television blackout.
Types of television
o Marriage blackout. During the first year of marriage, it is ideal that a couple does not own a television. They should spend time interacting, bonding, spending time together, growing as friends and lovers. Television has a subtle way of attracting us from valuable functions and events in our lives. Sometimes we find excuses to watch a show because it is so educational or meaningful, but in reality it does not add anything to the healthy development of a young marriage. A solid foundation must be laid early in the marriage for intimacy, friendship and sharing. The couple must enjoy spending time together before they spend time in front of the television.
o Childhood blackout. It is important for parents to understand the powerful effects of television on the minds of their developing children. Do not place your young infant in front of the television alone while you do something else. Ideally, it would be best to avoid having a television in the home. Because of the addictive, luring and tempting nature of television, I am suggesting that parents with young children do not have television in the home during the first six to 10 years of the child's life. Children also need to learn how to play and interact, communicate and develop self-governance. Great harm is done when, from birth, television becomes a normal part of a child's life. It does not matter how educational the television program is. Parental involvement cannot be compared to any information or knowledge gained from television watching.
o Crisis blackout. Often a parent may need to take away the privilege of television viewing because of disobedience or poor academic performance. Sometimes families would find it most helpful when there are serious family conflicts and crises to keep the television off. Often the television is used as coverall. It gives one the feeling that the pain is over, but when the television is turned off the pain surfaces. Keeping the television off forces the family to deal with the situation.
o Scheduled blackout. As the family begins to grow, the parents may want to purchase a television. This is fine. However, the television should not be treated like the refrigerator -- it is only useful when it is on.
o National blackout. What if we had one day in our country just three hours when every television is off (stations do not broadcast) and every one takes the time to share, show kindness and interact positively with each other? We can call it national television blackout. More next week.
o Barrington H. Brennen is a marriage and family therapist. Send your questions or comments to firstname.lastname@example.org or 327-1980 or visit www.soencouragement.org.
Thursday 8th August 2013 8:00 PM
Get Charlie Movie Encore and DVD Release August 8th in Nassau at Galleria Cinemas JFK at 8PM August 14th and 15th in Freeport at Galleria Cinemas Freeport at 8PM. The wait is over! Back by popular demand "Get Charlie" the feature length film written and produced by Collage Entertainment is back in theaters for an encore viewing along with it's DVD release. Grab a friend and come out to watch get Get Charlie - it's suitable and enjoyable for ALL ages and on your way out don't forget to pick up a DVD to keep the laughs rolling at home. See you there!
LOS GATOS, California Associated Press NETFLIX is expanding its movie and TV show streaming service into 43 countries throughout Latin America in the online movie rental company's largest international expansion yet.
Kindly allow me the opportunity to tread where angels dread to tread on a matter of national security. Let me get right to the point. The Bahamas must not be politically naive to assume that the Chinese are here out of purely humanitarian or economic goodwill. I dare to suggest that the underlying, not ulterior, motive is military and neither humanitarian nor economic, and certainly not religious; though we can begin to look forward to an
ever surreptitious move to
introduce Chinese religion in our tertiary institutions of learning.
Let us face it, the Chinese do not need the Bahamian economy for the sustenance of theirs. The trade imbalance shows that. The Chinese could find many other more destitute countries to allocate humanitarian resources if it was all about Chinese altruism. It is all about North America - this we must know and it is this knowledge that must guide our Bahamian-Chinese policies and our apparent unfettered receiving of Chinese 'cookies'.
In the Little Mermaid, Ariel, the star-dazed teenager foolishly and selfishly assumed that Ursula the witch was interested in Ariel and Ariel's agenda, in Ariel's world. Ariel certainly suffered from delusions of self-grandeur. But Ursula was connivingly quick, at the critical moment, to enlighten Ariel that it was not she (Ariel) that Ursula was after but her father - King Triton (the bigger fish).
The allusion to this Disney movie is only referential and does not seek to brand any government. I read with humor in The Nassau Guardian recently the move of the government to "dramatically simplify(ing) visas for millions of Chinese tourists". The dye is being cast and the bait is being laid, not conspicuously, not overtly, but covertly and in clandestine manners under economic and humanitarian gestures. The Chinese are coming. And America is watching in politically, perhaps militarily, astute ways and is cautiously and wisely silent for now.
Nations of the world are watching, while yet receiving a Sino-like invasion of goodwill gestures, financial and social engagements from this 'atheistic' nation; this nation whose military and economic might is potentially frightening.
We must know that it is our inevitable destination that one day we will be caught in the middle of 'a something' between China and the United States of America. When, what and how high the stakes, will be our moment of epiphany. And how we choose could be our Waterloo. But know that one day the piper will demand payment and we will have to 'choose ye this day'.
- Alastair "Dr. B" Basden
Tanya Wright has more than 15 years of legal and financial services expertise. Before being elected as president of the Bahamas Chamber of Commerce in 2005, she was appointed as the first manager of Bank of The Bahamas Trust Limited. Wright is currently the CEO and founder of World Cooperation Group, a business and legal consultancy firm.
Guardian Business: What is the biggest challenge facing your business or sector?
Tanya: Making ends meet. There is a general perception that lawyers earn great sums of money, but the reality is that for most small- to mid-size firms, collecting fees and finding new clients is an ongoing challenge even if you have decades of experience. It is also difficult to change your existing fee structure. My office badly needs an increase in fees to meet the increasing cost of keeping the doors open. Yet the industry has become so competitive that in a slow economy there is a fear that increasing fees will cost you existing and future business. The age-long challenge of the legal profession is to get true value for the service provided. Professional legal services are generally not viewed the same way as professional medical services, for example. Realtors fees in a land transaction are double or triple the standard legal fees of attorneys, while the attorney in most instances bears all of the risk.
GB: What measures need to be taken in The Bahamas to solve it?
Tanya: I think the solutions are industry specific. Attorneys can better regulate their fees and be more creative in how to advertise their services. Too few changes have been made for too many years to make this "ancient and noble" profession more relevant and respectable. Part of that is our fault. We need to get the message out to the public about who we are, what we do. Too often the public only hears about an attorney when he or she has done something that causes an investigation into their conduct. Every attorney I know volunteers his or her time in some way, yet for some reason we seem reluctant to talk about ourselves as if we were afraid of calling attention to our own value.
GB: What should young businesses keep in mind in this current economic climate to survive?
Tanya: Keeping customers happy is first. Then businesses need to continue to assess the market they service and see whether there are other markets locally or abroad they can provide their goods and services to.
GB: How has your business or sector changed since the financial crisis?
Tanya: I've had to reduce staff and at this rate, I've jokingly said I'll have to chase ambulances. Seriously, all work that pays is good work and neither I nor my firm is above any of it. It is too competitive and this was not brought about necessarily because of the crisis. Growth in the industry is and will continue to be inevitable.
GB: What are you currently reading?
Tanya: I like to read the book first, then watch the movie. The last book I read was "The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo". I sat alone in a movie theater one afternoon and watched the movie. I started reading "The Descendents" but succumbed to the temptation when the movie was released on DVD.
GB: What makes a great boss? What makes a bad boss?
Tanya: A great boss always knows that each employee deserves and has a right to be respected on the job. She will also show appreciation for talent and employees that are willing to go the extra mile.
A bad boss will keep an employee after she has lost respect for that employee. If you have no respect for the character or effort of an employee, they should not be in your company. You are not doing them a favor by keeping them on.
GB: If you could change one thing concerning business in The Bahamas, what would it be?
Tanya: I am unhappy that most business are unable to integrate true e-commerce in their business. It has always frustrated me that many services cannot be purchased online and that I cannot generally pay for goods and services in The Bahamas online.
GB: What keeps you grounded? Do you have any major interests other than work?
Tanya: Apart from my family of course, I am constantly looking for joy. Sometimes I find it in alone time, and sometimes I find it in a comfortable relaxed setting with friends. I realized that although you may have multiple priorities to address, you can really only deal with them effectively one at a time. To be quite honest, I spend a lot of my free time on frivolity and I probably watch more reality TV than I should.
What's been your most inspirational moment in the last five years?
This is ongoing; I don't think the general public understands how easy it sometimes is to abandon an artwork, not abandon art, that's something else entirely, but to scrap a work that's not going well. My favorite thing teaching at The College of The Bahamas is when students invest themselves in their work and follow through to the end with a project. There has been a lot of that in the past two years and I find that really motivational. These guys don't realize it but the best of them really keep me honest.
What's your least favorite piece of artwork?
It's always the last thing I finished the day after I've finished it.
What's your favorite period of art history?
I have two answers here. One, is the cave paintings of the Paleolithic. I just think they are the best examples of man's innate urge for visual expression. It is easy to get distracted by the business of contemporary art but the wall paintings from Lascaux, Altimira and others which date back 20,000 years and more come from a very human urge for expression. That need kids have to put pigment on their hands then to put it on a surface ties right back to early man and I think that is wonderful.
Two, is the art being produced now. There is a lot of foolishness in contemporary art but there has never been a point in art history with so much opportunity for interdisciplinary practice and such cross-pollination of ideas and aesthetics. I think that too is wonderful.
What are your top 5 movies of all time?
In no order,
1. The first 21 minutes of "Inglourious Basterds", the whole movie's great, but the first chapter is amazing.
2. "Let The Right One In", the original Swedish version, it's such an odd love story.
3. "Stranger Than Fiction", the protagonist is a watch, amazing!
4. "Barton Fink" I'm still trying to decipher the symbolism behind the slowly peeling wallpaper.
5. "Rebecca". This is Hitchcock's best, I've seen it 20 times.
Coffee or tea?
Coffee in the morning, tea in the evening... I'm very colonial that way.
What book are you reading now?
"The Master of Petersburg" by J. M. Coetzee. This is the third time for me, that book is a masterpiece, Coetzee distills all these epic human experiences into simple human interactions. Also, I just finished Haruki Murakami's "The Wind Up Bird Chronicle", it's very surreal but really good. It's like someone telling you about a really long dream they had and it actually being interesting.
What project are you working on now?
I'm putting the finishing touches on my entry for the NE6 at the National Art Gallery; that entire show I think is going to be very exciting. I'm watching other people install their work as well and most artists are really pushing themselves and their work in interesting ways.
What's the last show that surprised you?
This is a tie. I taught an Intermediate Drawing class at The College of The Bahamas for the first time at the beginning of the year and asked them to put together an exhibition as their final critique, and the show, which was called 360, really blew my mind. This ties in directly with question 1.
Saxons, One Family, Valley Boys or Roots?
I like the scrap groups.
If you had to be stranded on one Family Island which one would it be?
Crooked Island. Mosquitos as big as your head but that is some of the bluest water I've ever seen... sorry Exuma.
What's the most memorable artwork you've ever seen?
About 10 years ago I saw this work, which was simply a world map crumpled into a ball sitting on a black wooden table. I don't remember the artist or the title and it's not even my favorite artwork but it really left an impression on me. It's hard to describe but by simply crushing the world map, it realigned geographical boundaries and created a new planet of sorts and the black wooden table became a new universe. The gesture was as simple as you can imagine and easily dismissed at first glance but when you got it, the work was oddly affecting.
Which artist do you have a secret crush on?
Kiki Smith. Witches are hot!
If you could have lunch with anyone who would it be?
Tom Waits. I listen a lot to him in the studio. His music is so polar, I would just be interested to see if he'd eat meat straight from a bone with his hands or order a spinach salad instead.
Who do you think is the most important Bahamian in the country's history?
A really tough question and I don't have an answer, I think the people who do all the heavy lifting in this country are the ones we'll never hear about.
Who is your favorite living artist?
Kendall Hanna, he's in his mid-seventies, he's wrestled with his share of demons but his work has never suffered as far as I can tell. That's incredible to me. A few weeks ago he was reading an art magazine and I jokingly asked him if he was doing research and he looks down at me and with a straight face says, "It's like Napoleon said 'you can't win a war on a empty stomach'," and goes back to his reading. Who quotes Napoleon first thing in the morning?
Sunrise or Sunset?
Sunrises. I'm not an early bird so I see less of these.
What role does the artist have in society?
To be honest.
What's your most embarrassing moment?
I'm super awkward so I block these out, otherwise I'd get nothing done.
What wouldn't you do without?
I'm really lucky to have three or four really good friends who have become my family. Having people you count on, really count on, is a gift.
What's your definition of beauty?
My wife getting dressed in the morning.
Commonwealth Brewery Limited (CBB) is hoping to boost revenue with a continued focus on its retail offerings and special promotions.
Perhaps the most noteworthy marketing effort has been Heineken's alliance with the James Bond franchise. In recent months, CBB has poured considerable funds and resources into marketing, branding and film screenings at the National Centre for the Performing Arts in anticipation of the latest Bond installment next month.
"The entire organization is pretty geared up and pushing momentum to the new James Bond movie. A lot of money on a global level has been invested and we'll play our role in that," according to Nico Pinotsis, president and managing director at CBB.
Bolstering its brands and retail offerings continues to be a major focus for the BISX-listed company.
According to its second quarter results, revenue improved 5.5 percent compared to the same period last year. Year-on-year revenue was up 7.4 percent.
Pinotsis declined to comment on the company's upcoming third quarter results. However, he told Guardian Business that CBB "is working on all retail aspects", including the closing and reopening of stores to determine the best spots for business.
In fact, Guardian Business can reveal that CBB is hoping to establish a new retail outlet at Lynden Pindling International Airport and take advantage of the $409 million redevelopment.
Also on the agenda are the products in the stores. Pinotsis said CBB is reevaluating its wine portfolio in particular, determining what is selling and what isn't to "get that business going".
"We have some ideas on that and in due course these ideas will be translated to the public," he added. "We need to work on our brands and look at our wine portfolio, and of course the overall retail experience."
The stores are also bringing in new in-store promotions related to the James Bond movie, including the chance to win watches and other prizes.
CBB continues to push its other brands, such as Kalik, by sponsoring a number of local events. Pinotsis noted that the brewery is now a sponsor of nearly every regatta in the country.
That fact has been a point of contention in recent months. Jimmy Sands, the owner of Bahamian Brewery & Beverage Company, told Guardian Business that CBB was using unfair business practices in its quest for market share. A so-called "brewery war" has emerged in terms of gaining client loyalty through sponsorships.
Sands has indeed emerged as a credible competitor through the launch of new products and the opening of new retail outlets in New Providence and beyond.
Meanwhile, managing operating expenses has remained an ongoing challenge for CBB.
In the second quarter, this segment increased 3.2 percent. Raw materials, consumables and services rose 3.5 percent. Personnel costs also went up from salary increases.
"We work continuously on operating expenses," Pinotsis told Guardian Business. "We look at where we can save money, but we are cautious not to cut too far to the bone. It's about finding balance between managing your costs and operating efficiently."
CBB shareholders have enjoyed a dividend yield of 6.53 percent of late, which is higher than the average rate on BISX of 4.10 percent. CBB's strong international backing and distribution rights in the country should make it a good play for Bahamian investors going forward.