The Decorative Arts of colonial Jamaica

Fall 2021 Grant Recipient

Graduate Student

Catherine Doucette (Art and Architectural History) Jamaica was the epicenter of Britain’s burgeoning early modern Atlantic empire. While its early history has centered on its sugar and slave economies, the extraordinary craft traditions and decorative arts that emerged in the island have for too long been missing from the study of British art. This PhD dissertation in Art History explores the material worlds of colonial Jamaica, spanning from the late seventeenth century to the post-emancipation period, through an investigation of the objects locally crafted on the island and through an examination of the networks of craftspeople (both enslaved and free) that emerged in places such as Port Royal, Kingston, and Spanish Town.