I am Black and Native American. My work addresses lived experiences of race, gendered space and colonial objectification. “Mississippi POSITIVE” confronts New World borders, frame theories and the Black male body politick.
MATERIALITY: Metal, removed outside the studio, and painted by South Side Chicago weather; rusted using acids, including uric acid; red clay soil from my tribal burial grounds in Itawamba, Mississippi (where I was born and raised); sand from the Iroquois Landing. Strips of rusted nails and tacks Border each image. Why? Guns, Medicines and Thorns of New World colonization, confined obedience, and the economic power of Self-Denial, Self-Hatred and Self-destruction, which elevates Black art gallery owners struggling to create an artificial monolithic representationalism.
CRITICISM (from Black art gallery owners): “Your work is too depressing; too dark.” “Black people like brilliant colors.” “Don’t you ever paint flowers; I like flowers.” “I could never sell this; it would take too much energy. My clients buy only POSITIVE Black images.”
MIDWAY STUDIOS COURTYARD GALLERY
FOTA 2007 BARTLETT COMMONS visioncity gallery
University of Chicago 11MAY07 - 20MAY07