Deanna Tyson

ART TO DIE FOR is a tripartite exhibition which echoes the Triangular Trade, the trading of slaves taken from the West Coast of Africa by Europeans to work on the sugar and cotton plantations in the Americas. The exhibition takes place in three locations, two in the centre of Cambridge on King's Parade and one at Williams Art.

The work in Primavera relates to Europe, to the wealth and cultural refinement that resulted from the trading of Africans. Egg tempera Afro/Greek icons feature among the works on display here.

Africa is represented at King's College Art Centre by work that reflects the present state of Africa, both positive and negative. Works here include kimono (a word meaning "thing to wear") wall hangings and soft sculptures.

Williams Art, just off the cosmopolitan Mill Road, "The Brick Lane of Cambridge", represents the final destination of the journey, the Americas and the Caribbean. Here, Deanna's work is exhibited alongside that of John Lyons, artist, poet and great Trinidadian cook. The work in Williams Art attempts to capture the positive dynamism of African peoples through their struggle against prejudice. It focuses upon their use of music, dance and rhythm in order to assert their creativity and make their lives tolerable and meaningful. Kimono and woven portraits feature here. 

The exhibition is a celebration informed by African history and inspired by heroes of the African Diaspora.

Deanna, a Fellow of the RSA, together with Theodore Menelik, founder of the Kinshasa education project Menelik Education, will also be giving a presentation to RSA Fellows on Monday 23 November in King's Art Centre.

Deanna Tyson’s work is at all three locations.

John Lyons’ work is at Williams Art only.

Deanna and John will give a talk about their work on Wednesday 24 November 7pm to 8:30pm. Important: please email to book your place or contact Williams Art.

The closing event will be at Williams Art on Friday 27 November when John will read poetry from his recently published book No Apples In Eden and launch his new cookery book, Cook-UP in a Trini Kitchen.

Deanna’s artworks at Williams Art include:

New Orleans Rizin  (kimono)

Columbian Carnival  (kimono)

Africa Remembered



Old Man River

Miles Smiles

Yes We Can

John Lyons

The attempted Christianization of African slaves in the Caribbean by their European masters was, in the main, motivated by the need to control in order to effectively exploit the islands natural resources and maximize financial profit.

But Christianity did not eclipse the polytheistic spirituality and the proclivity of African slaves to perceive the numinous in their everyday lives.  Their conversion was a hybrid Christianity, a subtle infusion of African traditional beliefs with Christian dogma.  The cross remained a powerful symbol of their suffering at the hands of plantation owners.  In the two paintings, Eloi Eloi, Lama Sabachtani and The Furies the cross is a significant in the composition of these paintings.

The Trinidadian folkloric tale of the vampire Soucouyant was the inspiration for Skin Skin.  This   painting is an apt visual metaphor for the draining away of the economic life blood of the Caribbean.

Paintings featured: 

Eloi Eloi, Lama Sabachtani

The Furies

Skin Skin

Art To Die For at Williams Art

Art To Die For at
King’s College