Discovering myself as an artist has never been simple. One question I have always asked myself is whether or not I am a “Black Artist” or just an artist that happens to be Black. Any African-American artist that creates art about their culture is instantly marginalized into the “Black Artist” category. Yes, making art about social and racial issues is a passion of mine, but I am an artist first and I don’t want my race to impact that title or place me into a box. Just because I enjoy making art that starts a conversation about race and culture does not mean that that is the only thing I am capable of doing.
“Unapologetically Hyphenated” means that I am who I am and the color of my skin does not reflect my character. I am unapologetically veiled in my melanin and beautifully misconstrued by the mass.
This series reveals society through a critical lens on social, political, and cultural issues. In the words of Harvey Fierstein, “art has the power to transform, to illuminate, to educate, inspire and motivate”. It is important to me that I use my art to start a conversation about race, gender equality, and other important obstacles that society needs to face to ensure a brighter future. In a country where women and minorities voices are diminished, art has the power to make those voices heard. Art is the language that everyone can understand no matter their culture, religion, economic stance, gender, or ethnicity.