Idris Veitch.jpg

Photo by Anna Francesca

Idris Veitch

....is a Jamaican-born artist who works around digital collage. He is currently living in Kingston, Jamaica. He received his B.A in Management Systems at Eckerd College in St. Petersburg, Florida, U.S.A in 2005. Needing a change of scenery, he moved to Colorado where he worked as a computer technician before moving back to Jamaica a year after. It was back in his home country where his passions shifted to fashion design after attending a two year course at the Edna Manley School of Arts in Kingston. He moved to Japan in 2009 where he taught English in Nagano prefecture. Wanting to further pursue his interests in fashion, he moved to Tokyo in 2013 where he studied womenswear and menswear at Esmod Tokyo.

 

Being half-Nigerian with very little familiarity and knowledge of that side of his family, he began an intentional line of inquiry into those neglected facets of his life during the research process for his graduation collection. This curiosity sparked a methodology of cultural collaboration, allowing elements from both Japanese and African histories to coalesce in the final garments.

This time in his life marked a turning point. Not only was he able to find a distinct voice and message, but he also discovered the process of collage as a form of self-expression. Shortly after graduating Esmod, he continued combining materials from his research to create a series of digital collages titled “African Masks X Ukiyoe”. This series combined masks from different regions in Africa with uki-yo-e; a genre of traditional Japanese art using woodblock prints. With this body of work, he has been featured in multiple solo and collaborative exhibitions in Japan and Jamaica, published in numerous publications including Vogue Girl Japan, Tokyo Weekender and Buzz Caribbean. By offering a unique and novel perspective on established, traditional art forms, he was able to use his personal journey to speak to the greater experience of migration, culture, and globalization. 


His ongoing body of work titled “Boys and Girls” is a re-imagination of black identity. Speaking on what inspired the series, “As a black person living in Japan, one of the negative aspects I experienced was constantly being put into confined boxes due to broad stereotypes. I started this series as a means to escape that. I wanted to see myself somewhere far beyond reality - almost fantasy.”