Nominated by Marwen
At the core of my work lies a dedication to building community – a dedication to a collective creation for the advancement of a culture. Through photography, video, short stories, and poetry, I provide a platform for communities to be heard. Focusing often on underrepresented groups and silenced stories, my work is an open space for individuals to contribute to and feel validated in doing so. My work is for the people. As a Black woman, silencing or censoring myself would be the ultimate degradation of my being – I must speak and yet as a Black woman I am constantly aware of what it feels like to be silenced and censored. No person should be cast away, for every aspect of every person’s being is valid and valuable.
This is why I make work, and this is why I use mediums capable of freezing and re-creating time. My work is to capture the pure essence of an individual with little to no alteration. Often times, we are inundated with edited and filtered replications of ourselves with very little acknowledgment of our true beings. My work challenges the idea of having to cover up and hide from the world as if life is supposed to be an endless state of euphoria. The goal of my work is not to prove I am the only person capable of highlighting the purest forms of people and their stories, rather it is to spread a light in hopes of other people acknowledging and validating themselves in creative work or otherwise produced by them.
Image: PYRAMID (cover image of photo series), 35mm film photography, digital scan, 2017