A mural depicting a bird appeared near crafts and arts market downtown Montego Bay last Sunday. International artist Anthea Missy set herself to embellish a public abandoned wall that was so far used as trash collecting spot with smells of urine, right in front of the touristic arts and crafts market in Harbour Street.
The artist who spent 10 days in Jamaica backpacking along the coast out of the all inclusive made-for-tourists paradises explained: ´Western tourists tend to remain captive of all inclusive resorts because they look new and feel safe. If the streets downtown looked brighter, tourists would feel more likely to come downtown thus galvanizing tourism that directly benefits the local economy.’
Westerners stay behind the walls of their resorts where it is all shiny and new. Art can break this wall and encourage them to discover local flavors of Jamaica downtown.
“I painted a bird because to me, Jamaica is all about the fresh taste of nature and I believe that if it reflected in the local streets, it would make a big difference for local tourism”.
Prior to painting the wall, the artist had spoken to Saint James parish council which showed positive interest in having visible art in the streets of Montego Bay city.