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Tirzo Martha | Curaçao

Born in 1965, in Willemstad, Curaçao,
Lives and works in Curaçao.
Installations, performances

Graduated from the Arts academy of Korsou, Curaçao (1986).

Tirzo Martha is the recipient of several prizes such as the Cola Debrot Prize for Culture, by the government of Curaçao (2009), the Reed Foundation Prize in New York (2003) and he was nominated for the Fritschy Prize of the Museum Het Domein in The Netherlands (2010).

He is also co-founder and manager/teacher of the Instituto Buena Bista, Curaçao Center for Contemporary Art on Curaçao since 2006. He created this project along with David Bade and Nancy Hoffmann.

His last individual shows include : Afro-Victimize at the Frost Art Museum in Miami, USA (2011) ; San Juan San Pedro at the Centre Contemporary Art of Dordrecht, The Netherlands (2010) ; The Republic Of The Caribbean at the Instituto Buena Bista in Curaçao (2008) ; Digestion at the Art Studio Insight in Aruba (2008) and Destiny; Shunning the Journey at the BCN Art Directe in Barcelona, Spain (2003). Adding to that the several performances of Captain Caribbean – a character he made up.

Regarding his participation to collective exhibitions, his work was showcased in : Who More Sci-Fi Than Us at the Kunsthal KadE in Amersfoort, The Netherlands (2012) ; The Global Contemporary, Art Worlds After 1989 at the ZMK Museum of Contemporary Art in Karlsruhe, Germany (2011-2012) ; Adios Holanda at the gallery WhiteBox in Munich, Germany (2011) ; Vous Êtes Ici at the Fondation Clément in Martinique (2011) ; Antepasado di Futuro at the Museum di Korsou in Curaçao (2010) ; Dealing with reality at the Museum of Modern Art in Anherm, The Netherlands (2007) ; Infinite Island: Contemporary Caribbean Art at the Brooklyn Museum in New York, USA (2007-2008) and the project Galvanize at the CCA7 in Laventille, Trinidad & Tobago (2006).

He participated in the biennials of Curitiba, Brasil, in Cerveira, Portugal ; in the 1st Caribbean triennial at the Museo de Arte Moderno in Santo Domingo and in the 10th Havana Biennial (2009). 

Tirzo Martha’s artworks are contained in the collections of the following institutions : Museum of Curaçao, gallery Bloemhof in Curaçao, as well as in the collection of the kingdom of The Netherlands and of Oder 24 in Berlin.

Exclusive Interview with Tirzo Martha

Tirzo Martha answered to our questions in the framework of our special report on the show Who More Sci-Fi than Us at the Kunsthal KAdE in Amersfoort, The Netherlands – guest-curated by Nancy Hoffmann, and for which we interviewed the participating artists. Tirzo Martha explained his piece The Afro-curse Exorcising Machine. He also shared more about the creation of the Instituto Buena Bista in Curaçao. t nous fait partager ses envies dans son projet Captain Caribbean. “My process of creation is embedded in this principle: let’s start by where we are. Indeed, we all know about our history and what has been written around it, the situation we are living in, and our social surrounding. Let’s be aware of it and create a mentality where not only the past matters but also do the present and the future. Stop writing and theorising and start doing”.

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Artworks by the artist

Tirzo Martha | Spirit of the Caribbean

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Tirzo Martha | Portrait of Captain Caribbean

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Tirzo Martha | Caribbean Pose de la série Am I an African or a Nigguh

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