Aisha Tandiwe Bell, BRIC Artist-in-Residence | BK Stories

Aisha Tandiwe Bell, BRIC Artist-in-Residence | BK Stories



I'm thinking a little American flag ish about this box maybe unknowingly because I picked this red straight that's super flag ish so I'm going to trim the bottom edges I'm going to put in the – you can press well I think that everything that I make is an extension of my own narrative in that I kind of have felt trapped in terms of the basic things of sex race and class the stereotypes that are placed on Who I am and who I'm expected to be the degree to which I'm underestimated oh I started as a painter painting figures trapped in a box then they start to push out of this three-dimensional space the best medium for me to do that was to make these heads coming out of three-dimensional space so they also became math so I did performance with them so the idea of something being trapped in the space and the track of the space was a metaphor for the state of Africans in America you know we are the basis of American culture we are the music we are the sports we are entertainment I mean America loves our pagan as much as they love our basketballs jump shots but here we are with limited political power you know here we are with limited to say about what we're doing so here we are trapped in this law looking at double consciousness the black intellectual who kind of navigates the space of black community and intellectual community and it's kind of in this gray area because you belong in neither space I could see this box being like a 67 year old dude who was really active in the civil rights movement and then right about 79 he got a jheri curl and a purple velvet hat and then you know in the 80s he got you know caught with some paraphernalia on him and got sentenced an unusual amount of time did hard labor I have a whole narrative does it make sense instead of thinking about all the little pieces that are broken up I think of what these fragments create most people's histories are and most people shift according to who they're interacting with the Hat you changed the facial change the mask you change the voice you change the cold switching I'm Jamaican black American woman teacher artists so when I came up here from Jamaica I was put in ESL so it was like but she speaks English Oh put her and speech them I'm self-conscious about it because it's not something I paid attention to is something I noticed the more we want to navigate social spaces successfully we become better at switching these masks these faces these traps we all call switch to some extent and I think we also mimic who were speaking to depending on our our interest in making others comfortable the deeper you get into the game the more of a trap it is we stay in traps that we decorate or perceive as comfortable or will be give up to some extent and decide to like make it home I'm totally making a trap song to go with this body of work pretty good and shiny you know this trendy that's hot so the track in itself is a trick I feel like I make an object and it's about so many things you know and so the process of isolating it down to the trap I mean I thought that simplified it but it it did not

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