reggae reincarnated: alternatives to the classic bob marley poster

November 8, 2013

Art is beautiful in its fluidity, in how it can lead so many interconnected and parallel lives. I once heard someone say there is no difference between the sounds musicians make with their instruments and the movements dancers make with their bodies. The dance is just the music in another form, dance is music incarnate and both give life to each other.

By Kathryn Buford for Live Unchained

Disclosure: Live Unchained is among the organizers of the World-A-Reggae exhibition in Washington, DC mentioned below.

The International Reggae Poster Contest (IRPC) captures the beauty of music’s many inspirations. Since its launch in 2012, IRPC has received more than 2,000 submissions, from over 90 countries. This poster art isn’t just the artists’ creations, but reggae in another form; Reggae’s visual incarnate. It’s like IRPC artists are Reggae devotees come to set the visual life of Reggae free.

Poster by Taj Francis, Jamaica

Given IRPC’s mission, each poster not only gives new life to Reggae, but says something about what that life means. Every poster is a testament to the IRPC mission of, “celebrating Reggae’s positive impact around the world,” and bringing a new cultural beacon to Kingston, Jamaica in the form of a Reggae Hall of Fame. Proceeds from IRPC’s travelling “World-A-Reggae Exhibition” benefit the historic Alpha Boys’ School of Kingston, Jamaica, which has provided music education to underserved children for more than 100 years. Alpha Boys’ School is often called the “Cradle of Reggae” because without it, Reggae may never have existed.

Poster by Rosario Nocera, Italy

An accomplished panel of jurors including Luba Lukova and Yossi Lemel, have curated the top entries. While many followers outside of Jamaica may journey into Reggae through Bob Marley, IRPC artists understand and appreciate the music’s diversity. Some posters show Bob Marley in new way as with the 2013 winner, Balazs Pazkodi from the United Kingdom. Many others think completely outside the Marley box, representing Reggae’s other legends and spiritual and political themes of the music.

Poster by Dane Thompson

As IRPC continues to grow in popularity, Reggae will lead millions more lives around the world in poster format, bringing new energy to whatever space they inhabit. Starting with the exhibition launch on Thursday, November 14th at the Embassy of Jamaica, the nation’s capital will join elite exhibitors around the world in hosting IRPC’S “World-A-Reggae Exhibition.” The exhibition launch is open to the public and will include a silent auction, which is currently the only way to purchase the poster art.
The top artists from 2012 and 2013 touch upon several themes, but some of our favorite visual incarnates represented freedom, legends, lions and Alpha Boys’ School.

Poster by Corine Campbell, United States

Poster by Michelle Chung, Panama

Poster by Tomasz Bartz, Poland

Poster by Miguel Cachia, Malta

Poster by Balazs Pakozdi, United States