“When you listen to other women’s stories, you begin to understand your own better, and you begin to find ways back through and with each other” - Eve Ensler
The loving guidance of strong women has played a pivotal role in my life. I often reflect on how those moments shaped me as a person and influenced my perspective on life. I cherish these seemingly mundane memories and I believe these stories are worthy of documentation and commemoration through portraiture and storytelling. This is primarily what I strive to do in my work.
Through my work, I wish to share pieces of these stories that I’ve collected from the important women in my life. I believe these stories are valuable treasures, each full of incredible wisdom, and so I’ve taken care to elevate their portraits and stories through traditional religious Christian iconography such as the gold halo.
Being also interested in art history, I’ve found that the Western painting canon typically depicts women of color as either fetishized, exoticized, or relegated to background characters. In my paintings, I repurpose traditional Western painting symbols to underscore the importance and inner strength of the women in my life. In my book, I also put their stories right next to their image so that they are defined not just by their physical image, but by their words as well. These women are telling their own stories, on their own terms, and with their own voices. Essentially, my work is an exercise in storytelling, gratitude, remembrance, and commemoration of the inspiring women in my life.