A central part of my practice during the recent months has been listening compulsively to an interview between Kendrick Lamar and Tupac Shakur. They speak about survival within the mad city, a cocoon whose task is to institutionalize me. This began to serve as guidance for a lifestyle or religion, one inseparable from my creative practice. I am the All-American, a reconstruction of the racist concept. I watched The Graduate (Mike Nichols), Baby Boy (John Singleton), Top Gun (Tony Scott), and then Pumping Iron (George Butler). I felt left out because my character was no where to be found within the narratives I sought aid in. I continued researching racial and sexual complexities associated with the black experience to little avail– only growing more sensitive to my immediate surroundings and societal tragedies caused by no other than my “innocent countrymen’s” failure in understanding (White America).
I feel the obligation to contribute to this universal dialogue while confronting my rage. I refuse to self-destruct. This film project is my contribution and my survival. This is a body of work that subverts “that blackness” with surrealist humour. Through visually bizarre juxtapositions, it is proposing acceptance and integration at a time when the world seems to be experiencing a climax of hatred and ignorance. This project appears as an evolved series of 4 short-length films, together with related performance-happenings, sculptures, photographs, drawings, and artist’s books. 0. American is a high school fantasy with Darth Vader as its principal, it is proposing a terrible paradox: a meeting between the white female and the black abandonment neurotic.
Born 1993, Washington D.C. (lives and works in Brooklyn, NY)
2015 BFA Studio Art – Steinhardt School of Culture, Education, and Human Development, New York University
The Ground, White Toy Box; Brooklyn, NY
Not Here, Nor There, White Toy Box; Brooklyn, NY
The Rehearsal, Cooper Union; New York, NY
Bare Skin, The Outer Room; Brooklyn, NY
On Air, New York University Commons/Rosenberg Gallery; New York, NY
Unwanted Sexual Conduct Shouldn’t be Part of Anyone’s Commute, 80WSE; New York, NY
2015 Triennial: Surround Audience, New Museum; New York, NY
Normal, Commons Gallery; New York, NY
From A To Be, Happy Life Inc.; Brooklyn, NY
2014 New Wight Biennial: Compassion Fatigue, New Wight Gallery; Los Angeles, CA
New Sights, New Noise, 80WSE; New York, NY
+ -, White Toy Box; Brooklyn, NY
Commons Project, Commons/Rosenberg Gallery; New York, NY
Mercy, Mercy Me, Rosenberg Gallery
PRIZES AND AWARDS
The Richard Hirsch Memorial for Students in the Arts
NYU Steinhardt BFA Artistic Practice Award
May and Samuel Rudin Foundation Scholarship
NYU Steinhardt Scholarship
NYU Steinhardt Studio Art Talent Scholarship
Artist Residency at McDonald’s; New York, New York (http://residencyatmcdonalds.biz)
“The Highlight of the New Museum Triennial That You Probably Missed”, Gallerina Diaries.
“Steinhardt Commons features student work, blurs lines between furniture and fine art”, Washington Square News.
“Steinhardt students experiment with ‘Dream:Space,’ ‘Mercy Me’ exhibits”, Washington Square News.
Installation Assistant, 80WSE; New York, NY
Installation Assistant, James Son Ford Thomas: The Devil and His Blues, 80WSE; New York, NY
Studio Assistant, Learn to Read Art: A Surviving History of Printed Matter, 80WSE; New York, NY
Studio Assistant, Niv Acosta Studio; Brooklyn, NY
Studio Assistant, Kalup Linzy Studio; Brooklyn, NY
Gallery Intern, Bureau Inc; New York, NY
Studio Assistant, Lyle Ashton Harris Studio; New York, NY
Studio Monitor, NYU Sculpture Studio and Barney Digital Labs; New York, NY
White Toy Box/Barney and Friends