Palimpsest: Tales Spun From Sea And Memories
By Billy Gérard Frank
“And if all I know how to do is speak, it is for you that I shall speak. My lips shall speak for miseries that have no mouth, my voice shall be the liberty of those who languish in the dungeon of despair… And above all my body as well as my soul, beware of folding your arms in the sterile attitude of spectator, for life is not a spectacle, for a sea of pain is not a proscenium.”
— Aime Césaire, Notebook of a Return to the Native Land
“The audience as community has come to depend on the performer’s skills, and on the force of a personal style, to articulate its common values and interpret its experiences.”
— Stuart Hall, The Popular Arts
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Billy Gerard Frank (born in Grenada) is a Multi-Disciplinary Artist and autodidact living in New York who works at the intersection of visual art, filmmaking, design, education, and activism. He was recently selected to represent Grenada at 58th La Biennale di Venezia 2019 and is also one of the artists in the collective representing the island at 59th La Biennale di Venezia 2020. Frank’s practices mine personal, political, and social histories and challenge dominant and normative discourses around them. His research-based work addresses issues of migration, race, and global politics, relating to gender, minority status, and post-colonial subjects. He moved to London as a teenager, where he began painting and exploring experimental video art and installation before moving to New York.
His collected, altered, and own mixed media artworks and films have been exhibited in groups and solo shows in galleries and Institutions like The Brooklyn Museum (2020) and is in several private collections and institutions like the National Academy Museum of Fine Arts and Design. Over the years, he has been an artist-in-residence at several artist residencies. Frank is also the founder of Nova Frontier Film Festival & LAB that showcases films and arts from and about the African Diaspora, the Middle East, and Latin America. As an educator, he has lectured at universities like the School of Visual Arts, New York University, and he is a Lecturer/Faculty in Design and Directing at David Geffen School of Drama at Yale University.
Since 2005, after studying filmmaking and media arts at The New School University, Frank has worked as a writer, director, and production designer, in both narrative and documentary films that were screened at international film festivals, like Sundance and Berlinale. He has worked for clients like DOE, UNDP, UN, The Robin Hood Foundation, Verizon, Porsche, BMW, among others. His narrative short film, Absence Of Love, which he wrote and directed, premiered at the Palm Springs International Short Film Festival, shown in over 50 international film festivals. He was nominated for a European Music Video award in the category of Production Design for his design of Warner Music Group artist. He is presently in development on two narrative feature films.
Frank currently lives and works in Brooklyn, New York.