The National Library and Information System Authority (NALIS) has collaborated with the Carnival Institute of Trinidad and Tobago (CITT), the Keylemanjahro School of Arts and Culture and San Fernando School of the Arts Sports and Culture to host the exhibition titled: “Mokos In Motion” at the Rotunda, National Library of Trinidad and Tobago, Port of Spain from February 20 to March 6, 2020.
The colourful exhibition mounted by the Heritage Library (with responsibility to promote and preserve Trinidad and Tobago’s heritage information), highlights the evolution of the Moko Jumbie from West Africa to Caribbean Masquerade and public events worldwide. It also showcases the life and work of a few key stakeholders who have tirelessly contributed to the promotion of the entertaining and popular art form.
Images, stilts, newspaper articles, books, awards and craft that embody the Moko Jumbie, are on display. The exhibition captures the impressiveness of the Moko Jumbie, with its majestic strides or acrobatic, defiance of gravity, dance movements that makes it appealing, particularly to the youth. In recent years, the efforts of a few have led to the revival of the Moko Jumbie art form, and making available the opportunity for hundreds of young people, including at-risk youth, to learn the art of “getting high” on stilts. This Traditional Carnival Masquerade portrayal has also won King and Queen of Carnival titles. Today, the Moko Jumbie character showcases its versatility and agility at many local public events and is also sought after on the international front.
Contributors to the exhibition include Dr Kim Johnson and the Carnival Institute of Trinidad and Tobago (CITT), Glenn “Dragon” de Souza, Junior “Constructive Termite” Bisnath and Dexter Stewart.
The 2019 award winning, locally produced film “March of the Mokos” can be viewed in the News Media Room, at the right of the Rotunda, next to the Young Adults Library. This exhibition aims to showcase contributors to the Moko Jumbie revival, the involvement of the youth and engender a greater appreciation of this socially impactful aspect of local culture.