Robin Farquharson, born in Black River, St. Elizabeth, 1944, to a long-established (c.1745) Jamaican family. His photographs have their roots from a childhood in rural Westmoreland. The project to photograph ‘Old Jamaica’ had its origin in studies of the history of art & photography at Rhode Island School of Design in the late sixties.
The opportunity to ‘turn back the clock’ and make photographs of an earlier Jamaica proved irresistible. There was a sense of urgency too: Seaside mansions in Black River were already crumbling, Tinsmiths were giving way to plastic; boiled wet-sugar, mule-powered cane hoists and the hammering of roadside Stonebreakers, all were to disappear—while cotton tree canoes, donkey carts and Jackass Rope remain.
To try to capture on film these passing aspects of Jamaican culture, to record ‘history’ from present-day life, to make photographs that belie their age, this has been his pleasure with the camera.