Jal­lim Eu­dovic: The Caribbean’s Lead­ing Con­tem­po­rary Sculp­tor

The Star (St. Lucia) - - LOCAL - By Michele-Lauren Hack­shaw

Jal­lim Eu­dovic is well known for his min­i­mal­is­tic and con­cep­tual wooden block sculp­tures. His highly skilled crafts­man­ship shows ex­cep­tional and a one-of-akind ta­lent. His sculp­tures are lay­ered with cre­ative force, Caribbean wit, spir­i­tu­al­ity and po­etry.

Mr Eu­dovic's large-scale bronze sculp­tures are just as im­pres­sive as his min­i­mal­is­tic and con­cep­tual wooden block sculp­tures. The Lu­cian-born artist has pre­sented his work at sev­eral pub­lic art com­mis­sions in China and is set to re­turn again this year.

Jal­lim also has his work show­cased in var­i­ous pri­vate col­lec­tions in the Caribbean, United States and Europe. And, with open­ings at Mi­ami Art Basel, Ox­ford Street in Lon­don, and Chelsea, New York, Jal­lim Eu­dovic will soon make an un­for­get­table im­pres­sion on the art world.

Jal­lim Eu­dovic was ex­posed to a high level of cre­ativ­ity at a very young age; he's been do­ing sculp­tures from the age of five and has suc­cess­fully made a ca­reer out of his pas­sion. “My fa­ther's art stu­dio was my play­ground,” he says. “I also dab­bled in paints, po­etry, and the­atre. I was en­veloped in the world of cre­ativ­ity at a very young age.”

Jal­lim's cre­ativ­ity has been led by the be­lief that “in­spi­ra­tion abounds every­where you look”. Global and geopo­lit­i­cal is­sues of­ten stim­u­late him as well as sub­tle things such as ob­serv­ing peo­ple and cul­tures.

“We live in a global cul­ture right now; the world is in­creas­ingly be­com­ing a global com­mu­nity,” Eu­dovic shared. “Even­tu­ally we will be­come one in­ter­cul­tural melt­ing pot.”

His work is heav­ily in­flu­enced by var­i­ous cul­tures, but pri­mar­ily African cul­ture. “African con­tem­po­rary, African tra­di­tional art, also western con­tem­po­rary art, those are my big­gest in­flu­ences.”

Though he has many sources of mo­ti­va­tion, he also has a num­ber of in­flu­ences that play a ma­jor role in his work. The sculp­tor says his fa­ther was his first role model and was in­stru­men­tal in his de­vel­op­ment. Aside from his fa­ther, he es­pe­cially looks up to peo­ple of colour that are at a high level in the art world. He names specif­i­cally: Theaster Gates, Kerry James Mar­shall and Ke­hinde Wi­ley. He also ap­pre­ci­ates the great English sculp­tor Henry Moore, and the leg­endary Pablo Pi­casso.

Jal­lim be­lieves he is a man on a mis­sion with ideas and his pri­or­ity is to con­trib­ute to the next chap­ter of the global con­ver­sa­tion, as is a con­tin­u­ous role in art. “Civil­i­sa­tion has been push­ing for­ward ever since the dawn of time and it's up to me and my gen­er­a­tion to con­tinue push­ing it for­ward, to de­velop the con­ver­sa­tion.” Eu­dovic af­firmed.

How­ever, his goal as an artist is to cre­ate change in so­ci­ety, in his words, “To make mankind a lit­tle bet­ter than it was be­fore and to in­crease peo­ple's lev­els of con­scious­ness through art, as well as cel­e­brat­ing life.” His mes­sage is one of em­pow­er­ment to the marginal­ized so they may re­move them­selves from their in­fe­ri­or­ity com­plexes, as he firmly be­lieves that we all have some­thing to cel­e­brate within our own cul­tures.

“Just like the Euro­peans and Amer­i­cans have put their cul­ture up on a pedestal through art, I want to put my cul­ture and peo­ple up on a pedestal as well, in­ter­na­tion­ally, so that we could be on the same level with any other coun­try,” he says.

As an in­ter­na­tional artist he has learnt many valu­able lessons. “Art is a eu­phemism for life and you learn about life through art.” He learnt about spir­i­tu­al­ity, pa­tience, dili­gence, per­se­ver­ance, love and how to com­mu­ni­cate ef­fec­tively. But most of all he learnt about him­self through his work. “Selfde­ter­mi­na­tion and self-ac­tu­al­iza­tion are two of the by-prod­ucts of be­ing an artist, which has made me more pow­er­ful. I have learnt to be un­apolo­getic for the things that I am pas­sion­ate about and to apol­o­gise for my mis­takes by be­com­ing bet­ter.”

Jal­lim will cre­ate and erect a 12-foot bronze sculp­ture en­ti­tled “Mother River and Child” at the China Pub­lic Sculp­ture Park this year.

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