Llewellyn Xavier OBE, born October 12, 1945, is a leading Saint Lucian artist with an international reach, spanning the finest institutes of world art.
Xavier left Saint Lucia for Barbados in 1962, working as an agricultural apprentice for a time. A friend gave him a box of watercolors, and he was soon drawn to art. His first exhibition was a great success, and soon his reputation was established. In 1968, Xavier moved to England, where he became a pioneer in the field of mail art. He enrolled in the school of the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, in 1979, and for a time was a Cistercian monk in Montreal. After a time, he left the monastery, marrying and returning to Saint Lucia in 1987.
Xavier’s most important work to date, is a large cycle of collages created around 1993. Titled Global Council for Restoration of the Earth’s Environment, it was first shown at the Patrick Cramer Gallery in Geneva in May of that year. The collages incorporate all manner of recycled materials, including naturalist prints from the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries and postage stamps from many countries. They also include signatures of various world leaders of environmentalism and of a number of conservationists.
Xavier received the OBE in 2004 in recognition of his contributions to the art of the Commonwealth. His most recent series to date, also of collages, is titled Environment Fragile, and is meant to call attention to the destruction of the environment; he has sent pieces from the series to various dignitaries around the world.
Xavier’s work is in the collections of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the American Museum of Natural History, and the Smithsonian Institution as well as in various European museums and private collections.
LLEWELLYN XAVIER; ST. LUCIA AND THE WORLD
by Edward Lucie-Smith, published by Macmillan.