HOW HAS YOUR BACKGROUND AFFECTED YOUR LIFE/ WORK?
My background has affected my life and work by giving me unexpected opportunities. It has forces me to be curious of other nations, peoples, heritage, sects, religions, foods, awareness, American History and Colonial History. In all means a xenophile, it's what attracted me move to Kansas City, MO for undergrad studies.
I think if I was born in the United States and not Jamaica, my outlook on life would be of something else. By saying this, there is nothing concrete I can compare my experience to more than it being a matter of chance. My works also spotlights my people, the ones who I interacted with when growing up in Jamaica. It questions my (Memory) past to look to forward.
Memory is a battleground when it comes to how I think of images. My images are enlarged and depersonalized by mark-making, by patterns, by acts of scarring the black skin through scarification, by choice of violence. The patterns in my work are associated with the dazed dazzle painting from early maritime camouflage–it’s an optical illusion. It’s the color fields that appear on our smartphones from the slow bandwidth. The human memory acts this way, and the cinderblocks portray some of these same pixelated qualities. In essence, our memory is never exactly as accurate as the image we describe.
WHAT’S NEXT FOR YOU (UPCOMING PROJECTS)?
In April I'll participate in a 6-week residency at the MacDowell Colony, Peterborough, New Hampshire and present a solo show at the Atlanta Contemporary, Atlanta, Georgia. In May I plan on working with a brewery in Milwaukee, WI cooking and modifying their menu for one night. During the summer I'll head back to Colorado for a week at The Anderson Ranch Arts Center, Snowmass Village, CO followed by a short-term residency with the Nelson-Atkins Museum’s education department via the Charlotte Street Foundation, Kansas City, Missouri.
Photo by: José Manuel Girona