The Effect of Tropical Light on White Men

Catherine Lord

Artist Bio

The Effect of Tropical Light on White Men is “a skewed and illustrated encyclopedia of the Caribbean island of Dominica.” Working with a book designer, and conducting research that draws material from a wide range of archival sources as well as from the artist’s family history, Catherine Lord creates a work that functions as both a museum and a memoir. The book takes an unconventional approach to understanding Caribbean history and culture through an investigation of its flora, fauna, cooking, and “bad art objects” made by its European colonizers. By gathering source materials from whites who have left the Caribbean for Western countries worldwide, The Effect of Tropical Light on White Men attempts to broaden the dialogue on issues of colonialism, race, and cultural property.

Graphic Novel
Award Year

Catherine Lord

New York, NY

Catherine Lord is a professor in the Department of Studio Art and affiliate faculty of the Department of Women’s Studies and the Department of Art History at the University of California, Irvine. She has been active as a curator and in organizing performances at a number of venues including The Los Angeles Art Gallery, Center on Contemporary Art in Seattle, and the Laemmle Theater in Los Angeles. Exhibitions of her artwork have appeared at the Highways Gallery in Santa Monica, the Santa Fe Museum of Art, and the Gay and Lesbian Center in Los Angeles. She is a 2000 recipient of both the Frank Jewett Mather Award, and of the Sir Joseph Banks Fellowship at the Royal Botanical Gardens, London.