I've always been interested in how to make something opposed to actually making something. My process as an artist is much like my desire for learning. I take risk, I assess, sometimes revisit and often find ways to use that information to inform things that I'm currently working on. My work in general is rooted in African Diaspora as it affects people worldwide but most recently focusing in America. I use multiple mediums including ceramics, painting, drawing and instillation to express my ideas and to create deeper observations around my work. Usually when I'm working out ideas I like to start by making paper models and or sketches, which is a method of documenting my ideas that I later develop.
Currently I'm working on a project that includes 10 mini-series using multiple disciplines, these series are rooted in the spirit of Emory Douglas and the work he produced for the Black Panthers. I bring visual awareness to current social and economical injustices through the 10 point program, while providing a foundation where education and community programming can be used to bring attention to such issues. Each series advocates for a different issue that oppresses specific communities, one issue that I address is the lack of representation in the inner city school systems.
The series “The Miss-Education of a young N-G-R” reflects on the 5th point which includes advocating for education that represents people who are oppressed and providing understanding of where their place is in society. For this series I have created bookends that are a silhouette of faces of black leaders in my community. Housed in between those bookends will be a collection of books that will be later donated to a school in the same community. These books represent children of oppressed and underprivileged communities, giving them the privilege of having a positive representation of their race and history within a school context, even if that representation does not exist in flesh.
My desire for making and for doing is rooted in the lack of representation I had for myself as a youth in my own community. I grew up on a fixed income forcing me to often think outside the box, not having the tools I always needed, helped me figure out problems and use my creative brain. The many struggles of growing up as a child with the burden of being birth to oppressed parents has greatly informed not only my work but how I co-exist with a dominant society that oppresses people like me. Advocacy has become important in my art practice since becoming a teacher.