Sunday 5 July, 2020

Local artist featured in The New York Times

Locally-based digital artist, Shane "Dready" Aquart has had an impressive few months. 

In late April he was featured in Forbes for a series called #meetmywilson, commissioned by entrepreneur and philanthropist, David Leppan. The series draws on the isolation of COVID-19 lockdown, as inspired by the film Castaway, starring Tom Hanks whose character is isolated on a deserted island.

This week, in a section entitled Front Burner, one of Dready's most recent works was featured in the New York Times. The piece called, 'How to cook curry goat - 3 amigos cayman cookout' was covered by New York Times writer, Florence Fabricant.

Dready's description of the sequence of events that lead to the global coverage of his work is almost as whimsical as his creations themselves.

"Last month, in an IGTV chat, Eric Ripert and Jose Andres announced that June 25, Anthony Bourdain's birthday, would be Bourdain day, and at the same time [they] broke out a "Dready" of the 3 of them that I had done on behalf of The Ritz Carlton, Grand Cayman for the Cayman Cookout and flashed it around Instagram for all their followers to see."

The piece carries a weight of nostalgia, as it depicts the last time that all three were together in one place.

The piece is being sold in memory of Anthony Bourdain with a part of the funds raised going to support The Cayman Food Bank, which Dready has been supporting during the pandemic.

"If you try to always live good, right, you try to practice a little bit of ‘livity’, to be part of the idea of caymankind... this situation we find ourselves in creates vast needs of many, many kinds, and one of them is a need for kindness towards others...," says Shane of his need to give back to the community. 

Dready, who is originally from Jamaica, has made quite a name for himself in the Cayman Islands and throughout the Caribbean. His work is exhibited island-wide and carries with it shapes, colours and a vibe that is distinctly "dready".

"The art itself, like all dreadyness, is hand-drawn digital art," he explains. "I spend a lot of time on dreadys getting the colours, the positioning of ‘things’, elements or characters or stuff, and what I see as balance, just right ... The width and height of the art, the placement of a chicken, or some red, yellow and green, is never accidental, eh, I spend a lot of time fiddling with it and returning to it after setting it aside... I look at it on my computer in different formats, send it to my phone and look at it again."

'How to cook curry goat - 3 amigos cayman cookout' is described by Dready as "3 visiting chefs showing a 'local' audience how to cook curry goat when a goat shows up, looking surprised that they're talking about him..."

Prints are available in three sizes: 16x5, 24x12, 36x18 inch (or by special order).

For more information, visit dreadyworld.com .

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