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Artist Statement: In this work, I reflect on hair as a means of understanding my queerness through the lens of my blackness. The braiding of afro-textured hair serves, both in this work and in the cultural practices that this work references, as a means of self-transformation that exists uniquely within blackness. As such, I seek to address the ways in which the visual cues often associated with queerness intersect with the visual aesthetics of blackness, where hair occupies a space somewhere between body and ornament. Through the creation of jewelry objects which incorporate braided hair, I seek to understand the ways in which queer black people experience and ornament our bodies, and the ways in which we signal our identity to others through our appearances.
Materials: braiding hair, dyed silicone, steel, powder coat, thread
Dimensions: 3.5 x 3.5 x 26 inches
Educational Institution: University of Georgia