Dalton Narine

Dalton Narine, writer, filmmaker and Vietnam War veteran, grew up watching grainy films at rundown cinemas in his native Trinidad.

The word, written or spoken, fell in love with him in grade school. Migrating to Manhattan in his late teens, he found nirvana in the works of New York’s esteemed writers, and at art houses that screened avant-garde flicks.

Narine’s experiences after the war may have seemed fanciful, having plowed through the surreal world of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder. Still, he met lofty goals. As a junior in college, he wrote feature stories for the Village Voice. A few years later, he became a public relations manager for an  airline, then a features editor at Ebony magazine and The Miami Herald, even as he was producing cultural films in his homeland. Fourteen in all.

Narine has won two awards for feature writing and seven for film production, including New York International Film and Video Festival, Columbus International Film Festival , Chagrin Falls Documentary Festival, Trinidad and Tobago International Film Festival and Caribbean Broadcasting and Media.

“I’m a writer who sees the big picture, hence the marriage of image and prose,” Narine says. “If that sounds voyeuristic, well, it’s my art. Not my subject’s art.”

The latest subject of  his artistic voyeurism is Trinidad’s Carnival and Olympic Games icon Peter Minshall.

Mas Man is about the genius of melding traditional Carnival art with novel themes, spinning off a genre that Minshall calls “the mas,” which he brings to the streets way beyond the horizon of masquerade.