The art in This, That & The Third is a fragmented investigation around the construct that is personal identity. My research investigates the politics of race and representation by examining the ways in which the cultural production of language and images impact and influence identity and social behaviors.
Our contemporary society is saturated with curated images and signified language that all have the persuasive ability to influence how you view yourself and create pretense for your understanding of others. Historical stereotypes like the jezebel, angry back woman, and strong black woman, for example, still pervade our sitcoms, films, and advertisements, and not without consequence. Since these stereotypes persist, many black women are still viewed as a mythical other, with loud or sassy personalities and licentious in nature; without a critical consciousness to towards underlying messages in the media we consume it is easy to become accustomed to these largely false realities.
My work seeks to push against the power structures within institutional racism, and the oppression that these stereotypical images help to maintain. Through self-portraiture, performance and mask making I have sought to create an experience of vulnerability that juxtaposes perceived societal expectations with a series of constructed truths that questions the ways that I perform my black womanhood in public spaces.