Like home, 2022
Throughout the video installation, titled Like Home, I engage in a series of performances as a composite character inspired by the women in my family who have given me language around my feminine desires. The performances are venerative and act as an homage to the methods of survival often unimaged and lost to the fragmented nature of memory and imagery.
This piece is a “performance of possibilities,” which according to D Soyini Madison in her essay Performance, Personal Narrative, and the Politics of Performance centers on “transformation and transgression”. Madison goes on to describe transformational performances as performances that “contribute to a more enlightened and involved citizenship that also disturbs systems and processes that limit freedoms and possibilities.” Throughout the making of these performative videos, the ethics of care noted by Madison and my relatives take center stage, as I base these works on the performances of care I’ve witnessed my grandmothers and other familial Black femmes extend, which have become ritual within my life. These acts include the ritual of self-care through beautification, the formation of a spiritual relationship with a higher power, and the act of archiving. Throughout the videos, vignettes appear, disappear, and reappear, in relation to my understanding of the image, moving or still, as being inherently fragmented. This visual play of disappearing and reappearing within the videos relates this work to the reconstructed albums, as the images are purposefully withheld in certain instances, drawing upon the inability of the image to present the entirety of its subject to the viewer.