Melanie Jackson was selected for pARTage’s first international residency, alongside Ronald Mpindi, a sculptor from Uganda, and Mrs Mala Ramyead, from Mauritius. The residency, intended as part of pARTage’s cultural exchange programme, included educational activities such as teaching contemporary video theory to art students of the Mahatma Gandhi Institute, and also talks and presentations to other artists and the general public.
The residency allowed Jackson to follow up an ongoing thread of research into the relocation of the residents of nearby Diego Garcia, taking video footage and meeting political activists. She also started up collaborative drawing projects and used a local press to print posters as part of another ongoing animation project Root Entry,which explored the notion of international outsourcing. (Shown at Arnolfini Gallery, Bristol, UK in January 2007in her solo exhibition Road Angel)
Jackson writes of her Fellowship:
I had much to learn about art in the east African region. PARTage is taking a very interesting position – wanting to engage with outside international practices but without foregrounding the local arts scene.
It was a wonderful opportunity to make new work and have to think about making art where conditions are so different.
pARTage has been based in Port Louis, Mauritius, since 2003. It is an artists-led organisation dedicated to the development of contemporary art in Mauritius through workshops, events, exhibitions, educational initiatives, and artists’ residencies.