BOB MARLEY, says the 7th edition of Moon Jamaica, “has become synonymous with all things good about Jamaica.” Even though the man who brought reggae to the world died in 1981 his memory lives on in Jamaica in many tangible ways.
The Bob Marley Museum (56 Hope Road in New Kingston, www.bobmarley-foundation.com), in the house he lived in as an adult, “is now a shrine to the man and his music, with rooms full of newspaper clippings and personal effects.” There’s a gift shop and a small theatre used for a presentation during the one-hour tour of the home.
In Trench Town, the Kingston slum where Marley grew up, an outfit called Culture Yard (68- 1st St., off Collie Smith Dr.) has a tour that includes the young Marley’s house, now an historic site. “Culture Yard is safe,” says the guidebook, “but the communities in and around Trench Town remain explosive, so it’s not a good idea to go wandering on your own.”
“Tuff Gong” was Marley’s Trench Town nickname. A couple of kilometres west of Culture Yard is Tuff Gong Recording Studio (220 Marcus Garvey Dr., www.tuffgong.com), started by Marley to show that “a recording artist can make his music and be in control of his legacy.” The studio is still running, with Marley’s wife Rita and children Ziggy, Stephen and Cedella in charge. There’s a guided tour, a record shop, and the studio can be rented for recording.
Nine Mile is the hillside hamlet 95 kilometres northwest of Kingston where the musician was born in 1945. Next to his birthplace is the Bob Marley Mausoleum, “part of a complex that draws fans from around the world.”
Marley’s birthday is celebrated in February as part of Reggae Month, with concerts at Montego Bay’s One Love Festival.
NEW YORK, NY
While diving for sea cucumbers in 1998, Indonesian fishermen uncovered a wreck from the 9th century containing 70,000 ceramics, many still in excellent shape. The ship carrying them had been bound from China to what are now Iran and Iraq. Its discovery proved that major trade between China and West Asia had begun at least six centuries before its usually conjectured start and that sea as well as land routes were important. The cargo was meant for buyers at all price points: from humble, mass-produced products to white ware valued for its beauty and elegance. Secrets of the Sea: a Tang Shipwreck and Early Trade in Asia, the first American display of the finds, has just opened at the Asia Society Museum in New York. It runs until 4 June 2017. http://asiasociety.org/museum
Hong Kong Arts Month, which runs 1-31 Mar. 2017, mixes international arts shows with the chance to discover little-known artsie nooks and crannies of the territory. At the high end are the 45th Hong Kong Arts Festival, taking place 16 Feb.-18 Mar., and art fairs Arts Central, from 21 to 25 Mar., and Art Basel, on 23-25 Mar. For those intent on discoveries, there’s newly opened Wong Chuk Hang, a drab, industrial front for galleries, design and fashion houses, plus cafés, cocktail bars and boutique hotels. Wong Chuk Hang is on the new South Island MTR line, opened in December 2016, and is part of the South Island Cultural District, home to 26 galleries and studios. South Island Art Day is 23 Mar. www.discoverhongkong.com
New York, NY
The newest Georgia O’Keeffe (1887-1986) retrospective looks not just at some of her key artworks but at her entire persona as put forward by the clothes, jewellery and accessories she wore and the way she posed for the camera of such photographers as Alfred Stieglitz, Ansel Adams, Yousuf Karsh, Cecil Beaton and Annie Leibovitz. Georgia O’Keeffe: Living Modern runs 3 Mar.-23 July 2017 at the Brooklyn Museum. The Brooklyn is where O’Keeffe held her first solo museum exhibition in 1927. www.brooklynmuseum.org
Five hundred years ago, the best place to see robots was in churches. Automata were used to illustrate stories from the Bible. That’s one of the revelations of Robots, on 8 Feb.-3 Sept. 2017 at London’s Science Museum. The show isn’t meant to detail the workings of the artificial creations, but to trace their half-millennium history, explaining how humans have envisaged robots through the years and what uses we’ve put them to. Included are more than 100 examples, among them Robothespian, able to declaim in Klingon, and a lifelike baby that can give you a hug. Special movie nights will cover robots in film, from Metropolis (1927) to Ex Machina (2015). There will be robot-themed sleepovers for adults and panels discussing such topics as when will robots outsmart us. www.sciencemuseum.org.uk
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