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"The Darkness In My Skin" Artist Statement

 

 

I am an abstract artist. One who creates in studio and on stage serving as a conduit between canvas and what I feel within and around me during my live painting experiences. I use acrylic, latex and other mediums during these shows to tell a story using movement, color and stroke. The approach to my craft is often to offer “healing through tears”. Tears are magnets pulling pain from us to see it for what it is, a starting point to healing. When done with these experiences the viewer can measure what they see through their life’s lens and find their meaning and unique feeling.

 

This issue of “race”, of color, of history has been America’s cross to bear since its inception. It has become heavier for her to carry as each opportunity to have a brave, open and honest conversation passes. Many efforts have merely plucked the leaves of this painful tree of truth, while avoiding the roots.

 

The Darkness In My Skin is “technicolor root digging”. It is my intent to make the attendees feel the uncomfortable ache and desperation of a painful era and its connection to today. I aim to unveil an intense response that ushers in a need to connect and have open conversation with others that will contribute to the healing of our collective community. This show is not about pointing a finger, it is about pointing out the fibers of our truth that intertwines and hurts for very specific reasons. If it weren’t for hurting, we’d never know what joy feels like. With this show I aim for a collective uncovering of newfound joy after uncovering the roots.

 

This will be a moment where we experience our humanity together.


 

Concept

 

  • A 1.5 hour show where 20 hanging “bodies “or effigies, and one laying prone on stage (see attached image) are painted. Nighttime setting.

  • The effigies will be plotted (hung) in accordance with the Big and Little Dipper and North Star (among other “stars”) in the universe (see attached diagram). When enslaved people sought freedom they were told to follow “The Drinking Gourd” to the North Star. This gourd is the “Big Dipper”. The North star is at the end of the Little Dipper. There will also be one effigy placed on stage and another outline opposite side.

  • A guiding and foreboding (energetic at times) “ historical contemporary” music score will be created by Julian Montgomery (www.julianmusicprod.com, https://www.imdb.com/name/nm10155969/)

  • Video segments will accompany the performance. These videos will range from spoken word performances to short, dramatic clips)

  • “The Whole”: Live painting experience, soundscape, video, immersive components, spoken word

 

Purpose/Goals

 

Purpose

 

  • Utilize live painting performance to chronicle African Americans journey in America (American History) using the powerful image of “lynchings” as the tie that connects the then and the now.

  • “Conceive” and facilitate conversations as to how we can mitigate racism and its effects in this country, together.

  • Bring humanity closer.

 

Goals

 

  • Through the experience create an environment that seeks to ask, “What can you do to mitigate the effects of this part of American history as it relates to today?”, “How can we heal? “via Q&A follow up to show.

  • Create a memorable experience.

  • Get feedback (through surveys) on performance to enhance forthcoming shows.

  • Have persons sign up for “Common Conversations that Heal” sessions (min 10)

  • Host seven artist talks

  • Use footage and experience as the basis for a documentary

Are you brave enough to heal?