*Prepare to pause and read statements during the walk-through*
My current body of work is a collection of sculptures inspired by the physical and conceptual juxtaposition of COVID-19 and the BLM civil rights movement of 2020.
These pieces were not only inspired by the chaotic happenings of this year, in America, but the moments of personal/internal reflection I experienced along the way. During a time of extreme socio-political divide, motivated by race, the obligation to speak up and speak out, as a black person, intensifies. These sculptures have helped me find my voice as well as amplify it. Throughout the creation of my artworks I was led, not only to record what I’ve observed, but to consider our past and how that affects our present and future. For example “Boy” and “I Can’t Breathe” are figurative sculptures that simply showcase the extremes of emotion that I have witnessed, on multiple occasions, this year. While, “Blood Milk” and “Allocating Nutrients” are representations of systematic oppression, inspired by the history of wet nursing during slavery. And “Feast”, a contemporary still life, depicts how that systematic oppression and greed is affecting our current ability to obtain necessary resources during a pandemic in addition to how we will be remembered in the near future.
Through the use of popular ready-made materials like surgical masks, Clorox bleach, and knock off Lincoln Logs, I am able to make an immediate connection to a range of viewers. It is this connection that starts the conversation between the artist, the audience, and the work. With this growing body of sculptures I intend to stoke contemplation about our current context and the history surrounding it, accompanied by a range of emotions including disgust, fear, and empathy.