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Art Walk Festival concluded last month’s activities with a fête, more

It’s always great to see Jamaican artisans and talent coming together in one space to trade their wares.

According to Sweet A Dsignz owner Thaida Masters, she looks forward to the art walk activities because “…it allows me to showcase my art and also be part of the culture.”

For this reason, Kingston Creative has joined forces with Red Stripe Flavors, Main Event, Catherine’s Peak and the Kingston and St Andrew Municipal Corporation (KSAMC) for their monthly Art Walk Festival.

This edition was themed ‘The Last Fete of the Season: Carnival Edition’ and was a catalyst to promote Jamaica’s rich heritage with over 40 artisans showcasing their talents and creations to help raise awareness around their small to medium businesses to create.

‘I founded my online business four years ago, influenced by my passion for art and design, so I’m always keen to take part in creative events like these to showcase my work and talent. With products such as handmade keyrings, dominoes, bookmarks, posters, Christmas decorations and customizable items such as printed cups and tumblers, Sweet A D’signz caters to a wide range of gifting needs, making it perfect for special occasions such as birthdays and anniversaries. ‘, Meesters added.

This month’s Art Walk featured more than 40 artisans, offering a wide range of handmade Jamaican products, from art and books to fashion and jewelry.

Without street food there would be no fair. Several vendors selling delectable Jamaican dishes such as patties, chicken soup and fried fritters were also in town.

There were also local artists such as Viridian the Creative and Rica G, and the captivating steel orchestra musicals and energetic dance recitals from Denham Town Dance Academy.

Attendees also had the opportunity to channel their creativity during paint and drink sessions sponsored by Red Stripe Flavors, while enjoying the brand’s drinks, of course.

Nadine Thompson, owner of Naddzz Dezigns, wants others to know that the monthly art walks are more than just for the arts, and are a testament to the power of unity and community.

‘Each month they bring together a diverse range of artists, spotlighting a space that is often overlooked… These events not only give us small business owners a platform to grow, but they also promote a sense of connection and support. I believe in the power of unity, and when we come together and support each other, we all thrive in our respective endeavors.”

Nadine discovered her love for crocheting when she was ten and turned it into a business during the pandemic.

She says the online store quickly gained momentum after sharing, expanding its offering to include custom-made garments, swimwear and bags.

Today she offers a variety of handmade crochet items such as handbags, earrings, key chains, slippers, scrunchies and swimwear.

Andrea Dempster Chung, executive director of Kingston Creative, noted that it is important to support small businesses as this helps promote a diversified labor market, thus impacting the country’s overall economic growth.

“These types of events that focus on the cultural and creative industries,” she added, “are great for entrepreneurs who have the talent and want to see growth in their business. I believe the environment we foster at Kingston Creative provides a space of inspiration, community and networking opportunities, which are key assets for growing small businesses.”

Kingston Creative has also planned an exciting series of events for May’s Art Walk, which will focus on both film and digital art.

This will provide a platform to showcase the innovative work of local filmmakers, digital artists, content creators and gamers. Creatives interested in participating in the Art Walk film and digital iteration are encouraged to contact the team at [email protected] with the subject line ‘Art Walk Film and Digital’.

“This event, organized by Kingston Creative, is the first of many events that Red Stripe Flavors will participate in as we always look forward to promoting and supporting young artisans and creatives in their growth. After all, these artisans help build our heritage, ensuring the culture lives on, and we want to make sure we support their journey,” said Red Stripe Flavors Brand Manager Jodi-Ann Campbell.