In an unprecedented act of generosity, Carnival mas band Image Nation is giving away its costumes for the 2014 Trinidad Carnival, with its presentation of River Of Life.In conjunction with Adrenaline City and Patrick Roberts Gallery, River Of Life continues artist and designer Patrick Roberts’ River Of Life and Hope series where the river is used as an allegory in the creation of a year of art that includes over 100 pastel paintings on rivers in Trinidad and Tobago.
Roberts believes there is much to be learnt by studying the cyclical nature of rivers especially when one parallels it to the human life sequence, where we are born pure, are young and energetic, get older and supposedly wiser, can become corrupted or polluted and purge ourselves before reaching our destination of the glory of our sea which can be end or beginning depending on the point of view.
The moving canvas of 500 beautiful bodies in the River Of Life adult Carnival mas band is another vista for the theme.
Brilliant Trinidadian artist, musician, teacher, intellectual and visionary, the late Pat Bishop said it best when she said that ‘until all have crossed over …the river… none of us have crossed… and some we have to carry’
For us, the river has always been a symbol of life and hope, of love and gathering, of solace and shelter, of strength and power, of calm and confidence, of individuality and commonality, of worship and glory, of trials and tribulations, of beauty and magnificence, of struggle and sacrifice, of power and corruption, of cleansing and rebirth, of peace and patience, of diligence and success, of ritual and rebellion and of joy and celebration.
The free Image Nation/Adrenaline/Patrick Roberts Gallery costume is avante-garde, classy, dressy, showoffish, jametteish and churchy and is based on the traditional Trinidad Carnival costume, the “Madam Martniquan”, which came to Trinidad when the French from northern Caribbean used the conditions of the 1783 Cedula of Population to migrate to Trinidad and impact on Trinidad’s Carnival. The “Madam Matrniquan” costume influenced what has become commonly known as the washerwomen’s often seen at the river.
Whilst the costume is free, masqueraders pay $1,250 for the all-inclusive side of the package – premium drinks, food, music and security.
A separate Carnival Monday costume is also included at no further cost.
Masqueraders can register with Solange at Tequila Twist on the Avenue in Port of Spain 7 to 9 p.m. daily, with Jihan at fashion Is at #3 Mathura Street, St. James, noon to 5 p.m. Tuesday to Saturday, Monday to Saturday and with Aunty B at 8 Melville Lane, Port of Spain, 1 to 5 p.m. Monday to Saturday.
The look book of the River Of Life costumes can be had by e-mailing firstname.lastname@example.org requesting either a soft or hard copy, which is also free.