Around 1880 a Jamaican woman named Jessie Ripoll opened the doors of “Alpha Cottage” to a young girl in need of care. In 1884, a few homeless boys took up residence and thus Alpha Boys School was begun. As the work at Alpha grew, Ms Ripoll turned to the Sisters of Mercy for assistance. She eventually joined the order and in 1890 when Alpha Boys School was certified by the government as an Industrial School for Boys’ the Sisters of Mercy took over administration of the school which continues to this day to be a residential vocational school for at-risk boys 8-18 years old and run by the Sisters of Mercy. Alpha has a long tradition of encouraging the boys to be the best that they can be within a framework of love, discipline and learning. In addition to providing a general education and training in trades such as agriculture, printing, tailoring and woodworking, Alpha’s music program has produced some of the world’s most respected and skilled musicians including jazz men Dizzy Reece and Jo Jo Harriot as well as ska pioneers Don Drummond, Lester Sterling, Tommy McCook and Cedric Brooks (founding members of the Skatalites) not to mention dancehall deejay Yellowman, among many others. The music program continues to be a trusted source for touring and session bands as well as hotel bands and cruise ships. Today there are about 100 boys who call Alpha home and are working hard to be the next generation of Jamaican success stories. </br></br> This is a very unique poster printed by the print studio TIND in Athens, Greece, it was designed and created by myself as a beneﬁt art for Alpha Boys’ School and printed in two limited edition versions, red and black and the version which i will send to you, Gold and Black, only about 10 were printed. The red and lack version was auctioned in Jamaica at the National Gallery of Jamaica and raised US$420 (unframed) for Alpha. Sister Susan Frasier of Alpha so loved this poster that it was adopted as the oﬃcial logo for Alpha Boys’ School earlier this year. We will not make any more prints of this poster in the future. This poster design has inspired Alpha to begin teaching the student a new vocational trade, screen printing.
Jamaica Vibes, Reggae Art