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US Embassy, Chase Fund back Rex Nettleford Arts Conference

Published:Friday | September 25, 2015 | 1:57 PM

The Edna Manley College of the Visual

and Performing Arts (EMCVPA) will stage the third bi-annual Rex Nettleford Arts Conference on October 14-17. This year, the conference has received much-needed support from the Embassy of the United States and CHASE Fund.

The Rex Nettleford Arts Conference brings together arts educators and artists/es from all over the world to share their knowledge and experiences, as well as research in the creative and cultural industries.

The theme for this year's conference,'Growing Arts: Breaking Boundaries', comes against the background that the arts have been faced with challenges including misperceptions of its value in society and lack of support for careers in the field.

The conference will seek to create connections and parallels that will break stereotypes and marginalisation of the arts that continue to impede its growth.

Principal, Dr Nicholeen DeGrasse-Johnson said, as a

tertiary institution, the

EMCVPA embodies the arts in practice, performance and scholarly pursuit. Therefore,

the Rex Nettleford Arts Conference is pivotal in

achieving this mission.

Counselor for public affairs at the United States Embassy, Joshua Polacheck, said, "The arts provide an avenue for free expression to address social, political and cultural issues. Our two nations share deep cultural ties and our support to EMCVPA for this conference builds on those ties. We believe the arts have influence far beyond the cultural sphere and this conference addresses three of our strategic goals - emboldening responsible and democratic governance, enabling Jamaican prosperity and endorsing the concept of equal citizenship for all Jamaicans."

The support of the Embassy of the United States, Chase Fund and other sponsors, such as Knutsford Court Hotel, EBSCO and the National Gallery of Jamaica, is a

testament to a growing support for the arts in Jamaica and the importance of arts and culture to the development of the nation.