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International Women’s Day 2021: Celebrating the work of Christine Chetty Payet

Today is International Women’s Day, a day that recognises the achievements of women globally in the movement towards equity and representation. First celebrated by the United Nations in 1977, International Women’s Day has had a yearly focus which has been based on the rights of women since; this year is no different with the focus being Women in leadership: Achieving an equal future in a COVID-19 world. This is why we are delighted to recognise the leadership of Christine Chetty Payet, a contemporary Seychellois artist and Director of Seychelles Institute of Art & Design (SIAD).

Christine’s contribution to the visual culture of Seychelles has been instrumental, not only in her art, which has been exhibited across the world including New York, Dakar, Pretoria and Venice, but in her leadership of a national training institution that develops and prepares learners for careers in the industry.

SIAD is committed to gender equality and outcomes that meet demand in terms of quality, creativity, innovation and equal opportunities.

Christine’s own versatility can be found in her artwork, which uses textiles, paint and found objects, to tell stories of community, poverty, mental health and the resilience of women.

Christine celebrates her heritage and identity in her work as an African Seychellois woman; utilising crafts to create objects and canvases that are 3 dimensional and utterly absorbing. She repositions art into the real-world metaphorically as well as physically; using concepts and philosophy to encourage the active onlooker to go beyond appreciation and into their own interpretation and subjectivity.

Some notable pieces and projects to check out are The Gap, Women in the Dark (collaborative project) and more recently Fear and Isolation which explores social distancing during the Covid-19 pandemic.

We are extremely lucky to have experienced Christine’s work and excited to engage with her future pieces as she continues to lead and inspire a generation, building a legacy for the next.

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