NAVIGATING THE SHOW
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Our journeys begin at birth, soon filling with layers of life experiences which serve as the fabric of our lives. Individual stories, colorful in their own right, which we carry and build upon for the duration of our very existence. Stories as uniquely patterned as our own fingerprints. Here pages from my story are stitched lovingly with black threads through layers of fabric which symbolically hold two continents and it’s people together forever.

In 2010, while participating in a women’s artist exchange to Tanzania, I was greeted daily by the rich colors of my surroundings including the colorful interplay of patterned fabrics worn by the local women. This mixing of textiles greatly impacted me and spoke volumes to a freedom of expression that I didn’t possess. Upon returning back home from this amazing exchange experience my collage work on canvas began to welcome a richly patterned mix of both African fabrics coupled with a dizzying array of commercial textiles. Consciously/subconsciously I began to push aside thoughts deeply entrenched in Eurocentric standards in order to make room for this new way of “seeing”.

My art making ritual begins with prayers of thankfulness, for being able to rise up each day and walk into the studio and begin the creative process. My prayers serve as petitions to God for whatever he has placed in me to come forth through my work. Afterwards I may sketch some, write some, listen to music. Then I begin reaching for the colorful fabrics that are tucked away in drawers according to their color family. From other drawers I may retrieve patterns I’ve created over time with some of my favorite shapes. And yes, there are other drawers that simply contain facial features of eyes, noses and mouths. These have been drawn onto web backed fabric, cut, ironed to black felt and hand trimmed with my favorite scissors. As I continue my approach is very much steeped in collage techniques, with the various elements being pulled together almost as if assembling a jigsaw puzzle. My love of colors, patterns, shapes and their exciting interplay serves as the basis for what I create. Each stitched portrait mask and figure allows me to share my story of connection and celebration of both African American and African cultures lovingly held together by black threads.

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2021 Virtual Show

NOW THRU JULY 31, 2021

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