So, I've traveled miles in my inner and outer world: starting and completing a 360-degree mural within 5 months, making and publishing new works out into the world, and all-too-briefly contributing to the opening of the greatest monument to African Americans in recent or distant memory.
I'm still looking for a permanent studio location, but I'm happy with the things I've made while on the run!
And next- pictures!
The first set shows the outcome of a community mural I did in partnership with Arlington Arts Center (www.arlingtonartscenter.org). The mural, in a nutshell, is a partial autobiography on my past year and shifting of physical place, in visual/allegorical form. Loosely put, there is chaos at the very beginning, then a period of intense confusion and liberation of past demons and situations, all leading up to a gradual lifting of my spirits and my inner life. I left Philadelphia with very little to show for it; with the help of new friends and experiences down in DC, I've found a new, better outlook to replace what I've lost.
A friend of mine once compared the progress of the mural to Scherezade and the 1001 Nights- that every dawn, in order to keep her head, she needed to tell a new and interesting twist on the story that she paused the day before. With my own visual story, I wanted to focus less on factual objects and more on the subjectivity of memory, the passage and creation of energy- and ultimately the shaping and direction of a constantly evolving living narrative. After I finished it, I painted over and destroyed the various elements of the mural on August 28th, 2016. The mural, like so much of my work, has passed on into digital memory (photographs below).
Each person that helped me create this mural, who ventured to add their own individual voice to it, has my gratitude. Rachel, Diana, Sam, Adam, Leo, Gyasi, Yuri, Minna, Alanna, Hillary, about a hundred or so others, and last but not least- my very excellent friend/mentor, Meei Ling Ng- were alll crucial to the making (and destruction) of this piece. Main takeaway of this is- when people work together, wonderful things happen!
Most of these works in the next slide show were done in the last 2 months, and are avaliable for sale. Contact me if interested.
Back in June, I hosted a live concert in my studio- the same studio with the large mural above!- which was part of an music series called Sofar Sounds (www.sofarsounds.com/washington). They play in different private venues all over DC (and the world!) and the local team chose my studio at Arlington Arts to play one night. Cue 3 hours of violin, guitar, voices that swelled and soothed. Also, I met a person there that was connected to the opening of the NMAAHC, and voila! I was offered a chance to design a skin for Google's new virtual reality unit, Google Cardboard. One thousand total units were made, and distributed during NMAAHCs opening events. I'm very humbled and grateful to be a tiny part of black history.