Rampa, in partnership with Cork Printmakers, is honored to present the first solo exhibition in Portugal by Irish artist Marianne Keating. Titled "Better Must Come", the exhibition curated by Miguel Amado, the director of Cork Printmakers, gathers a selection of films produced in the last years, shown for the first time in Portugal.
Marianne Keating addresses connections between Ireland and the Caribbean in the context of both the British Empire and today. Specifically she explores the largely unknown story of the Irish diaspora in the Caribbean, initiated in the framework of the region’s plantation economy.
Keating has been examining the wave of immigration from Ireland to Jamaica that occurred between 1835 and 1842, in the aftermath of the abolition of slavery. The hardships suffered by most Irish mem and women under the domination of Britain facilitated the recruitment of a new labor force for the Caribbean plantations, which had been suffering from labor shortages after the liberation of African slaves. The British colonizers forced the Irish into indentured labour, a contract that bonds the worker to a job for a period of time with no pay, in return for the travelling expenses, room and board. Keating also researches the contemporary legacy of the Irish population that remains in Jamaica, addressing themes such as creolization, and the political system in the aftermath of independence.
Keating’s films mix archival materials (for instance documents and photographs), found footage, and written sources (from sociological essays to news pieces) with her own video recordings, interviews and field notes. She uses text as caption or voice-over to complement the image and sound, overlaying information to amplify the depicted perspectives.