Greetings, nice and decent people. I hope your spirit is at peace today. Thanks for all the support and feedback on the first post. If this is your first time here, blessings to you as well. As the title states, this is Episode 2. This is a mini-series (6 episodes) dedicated to highlighting the work of some really talented Jamaican painters and(or) illustrators while getting to know them a little better. This week, we have Abii Paris. Enjoy!
I’m slightly obsessed with music. So let’s start there. Put your playlist on shuffle and give me the first five selections. [Yes, this is now a #fortheculture876 staple]
- Gingerbread Boy – Miles Davis
- Dolores – Miles Davis
- Footprints – Miles Davis
- Feel – Post Malone ft. Kehlani
- Feeling Good – Nina Simone
Oooooooo nice nice. Everything here is fire. Especially Kehlani and Nina Simone. You paint to Jazz often?
Yeeeeeeess lol. I do love painting while listening to jazz. Listening to it beforehand always tend to get my creative juices flowing and that’s when the real magic happens.
Someone got inspiration for the name of their child from one of your pieces (Niayema). Tell us a little more about that.
Yes, one of my ‘parry’ (friend) from high school had messaged me to let me know that he’ll be naming his daughter after that painting. Niayema is a commissioned piece I did to embody the essence of a black woman. The name was inspired by Niyama, which is a Sanskrit word, meaning observance. It’s a yoga practice. The name Niayema is a ‘spin-off’ of Niyama and funny enough, whenever I look at the painting it does exude all that the practice is about.
Art by: Abii Paris (Niayema)
You practice yoga?
No lol. I have tried many times but I lack the dedication needed to continue.
Tell me about something or a situation that annoyed you recently.
I walked to the supermarket yesterday and it was very annoying that I couldn’t walk in peace without men saying dirty things to me. Compliments would have been fine but saying something like, “come drop one a yuh titty dem inna mi mouth” is not cool. I feel like they are fueled by each other because once one does it then it’s like a competition and they walk you down and they are not quiet when they do so. They made me feel like I was walking down the street naked but I was clothed. It’s very annoying!
I feel you. That is one of the unfortunate realities of Jamaican society and to imagine that these same men have a mother or even worse…. a daughter or daughters. Crazy.
Yes, it’s just the sad reality.
Art by: Abii Paris
Alright, back to the art. I see that your website is under construction. Any update on that?
I am currently working on a few pieces to relaunch my website. So it will be under construction for a little while.
Oh ok. I know you do paintings, make jewelry and custom designed clothes. Am I missing out anything?
Yes, that pretty much sums it up.
Art by: Abii Paris
Chippie’s over every other snack riiiiiight?
Yes! Lol although I must unashamedly admit that St. Mary’s Extra Crunchy has my heart currently.
Ahh you’re still a good person lol. In closing, is there any message you would like to leave with the people?
I’ll close with a quote from Denzel Washington.
“At the end of the day, it’s not about what you have or even what you’ve accomplished. It’s about what you’ve done with those accomplishments. It’s about who you’ve lifted up, who you’ve made better. It’s about what you’ve given back.”
That’s where we end our little chat with Abii. Thanks for reading.
Keep up with Abii Paris online and check out more of her amazing artwork: