Yinka Shonibare is a British-Nigerian artist who calls himself a “post-colonial hybrid”. This is reflected in his new exhibit, the latest in a rolling program of contemporary art commissions for the plinth in London’s famed Trafalgar Square. Shonibare reproduces Horatio Nelon’s ship, HMS Victory encased in a bottle that sends a message of multiculturalism & diversity in England. Shonibare meshes his African roots with his British roots by utilizing African batik fabrics to create the sails of the ship that marked what is known as the most decisive British naval victory of the war led by Lord Horatio Nelson, the historical Battle of Trafalgar.
As England battles with its own anti-immigration issues, this exhibit could not have come at a better time. England is by far one of the most diverse nations in the world with immigrants from all over the world coming to its shores in search of the British equivalent to the ideal of the American Dream. The exhibit has served as a catalyst in sparking up new debate on multiculturalism in England & how a nation of immigrants can move forward with a new conservative government empowered by the rise of anti-immigration sentiments.
QUEEN ELIZABETH ON IMMIGRATION:
“My Government will limit the number of non-European Union economic migrants entering the United Kingdom, and end the detention of children for immigration purposes.”
“Shonibare’s works are a powerful reminder that cultures are almost never “pure”, but rather made from a messy entanglement of influences. Diversity enables this kind of cultural mixing to take place, for people to hear new ideas and acquire the best of what they see, eat, enjoy and learn. London (along with other international cities such as New York, Singapore, and Berlin) has become a place for people around the world to live, visit, consume and make culture – and, of course, do business. And while we are inevitably drawn to the culture of our upbringing, the migrant experience shows we can also be inspired by new places. Derek Walcott, Caribbean poet and Nobel laureate, famously said: “Something prickles in me when I see the word ‘Ashanti’, as with the word ‘Warwickshire’.” Read More Here
Hey England, take a sad song & make it better, remember to let diversity/multiculturalism into your heart then you can start to make it better.