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ARTIST STATEMENT

I was a tourist, not a local.

 

      I haven't even reached the age of thirteen and there I was, standing in the Sistine Chapel and looking up at Michelangelo's results of four years worth of labor. Instead of thinking how beautiful it all was, I wondered instead if a woman ever did all of this, too?

      Nothing in my Social Studies class perfectly outlined what I mused as I traveled. Fifteen cruises between the Caribbean, Europe, the Mediterranean, and northern Africa all throughout my childhood in the early 21st century, and I was still detached from who and what build it all—the people. I wasn't even grounded to the community I was raised in with the number of travels my family and I did. Detached like the textbooks that would summarize the list of Meso-American tribes and other ethnic groups. Such was the reason I was drawn to artists such as Frida Kahlo, Mary Cassatt, and Gustav Klimt—artists from very different movements, but all had a very revolutionary way of depicting women. It drove me to learn more about ancient civilizations and cultures that still live on even if some of us may have forgotten them.

      It resulted in me learning about a plethora of ambitious and successful female figures that it boggles the mind about how undermined figures like the Kandake warrior queen, Amanirenas, having a victory over the Romans were. How many people even know about the Chinese prostitute from the feudal era that rose to power and became an unstoppable pirate lord, and peacefully retired? And with that, I became resolute in highlighting underrated ancient figures, religious icons, and even current events in hues, and profiles as vibrant as known figures would be illustrated—lined with metallic and bold hues.