Young Leeds Artist Contributes to UK Art Scene

Young Leeds Artist Contributes to UK Art Scene

The World Reimagined sees 10 trails of Globe sculptures across 7 cities, London, Birmingham, Bristol, Swansea, Liverpool City Region, Leeds and Leicester created by 100+ artists responding to themes ranging from 'Mother Africa' and 'The Reality of Being Enslaved' to 'Still We Rise' and 'Expanding Soul'.

One of the selected artists was Jioni Warner who attends Leeds Central Adventist church. Jioni has recently completed her Master of Fine Art at Liverpool John Moores University where she received a Distinction.

Jioni's Globe has been installed at the Birkenhead Priory. As the granddaughter of a woman who was part of the generation of West Indians who answered Britain's call for workers, the Globe's title, Weh Yuh From? Weh Yuh A Go?, seeks to understand what my ancestor and others like her went through, in their migration to Britain. 

The Globe is a personal response to reflecting thoughtfully and broadly on the British Caribbean history which pays homage to the Windrush generation, instilling a more profound sense of empowerment to what our forebears achieved in paving the way for the future generations, including my own. Having these discussions around the Windrush brings further details into their stories which can be passed onto future generations. 

Maya Angelou wrote "You can't know where you are going until you know where you have been." This has been shortened in a Caribbean dialect which has created the title. 

The portrait paintings over the collage pay tribute to Black women as they are overlooked when discussing our history, dealing with the triple oppression of racism, sexism, and classism. They represent the grandmother, mother, aunties, sisters, daughters, and others dear to us. 

The collage of photos was sourced from archives, and the internet and collected from the Leeds and Liverpool Caribbean community. The late Lionel Roper of Leeds Central Adventist church, his RAF service record and photos are featured on the Globe. Elder Roper arrived in Hunmanby Moor, North Yorkshire in November 1944. He was part of the second batch of West Indian volunteer recruits.

The Globe seeks to highlight the Black British experience and culture containing photos from the 1950s to 1990s, covering the arrival, daily life, cultural events, and the hostile environment many faced on their arrival in the UK.