I believe I am descended from a long line of storytellers or West African ‘Griots’ – someone who passes on their society’s history, especially through stories, poems, and music. Because for as long as I can remember stories have been recounted, vividly, around me, usually with a moral message. They continue to play a significant role in my life.

When I came to the UK as a child, from South America, the environment towards Black people and anyone different was one of extreme hostility. I developed a passion for telling stories to endure the impact to my life here. My work is consequently driven by political, social and cultural issues of being a Black woman living in the West. I am very interested in art as empowering change through narration and dialogue.

Through the creation of figurative sculptures and installations I tell the story of Jilo, a Black woman, her struggles and her journey. Her invisibility while being visible, and the irony of this. I experiment with recycled metal, glass, paper and textiles, sometimes pressed into jesmonite and plaster moulds, to reflect the complexities of her experience and who she is. The materials are selected deliberately to symbolise different states of being. For example: metal for strength, latex – invisibility and vulnerability, glass – fragility and paper – media or propaganda.

 

I believe I am descended from a long line of storytellers or West African ‘Griots’ – someone who passes on their society’s history, especially through stories, poems, and music. Because for as long as I can remember stories have been recounted, vividly, around me, usually with a moral message. They continue to play a significant role in my life.

When I came to the UK as a child, from South America, the environment towards Black people and anyone different was one of extreme hostility. I developed a passion for telling stories to endure the impact to my life here. My work is consequently driven by political, social and cultural issues of being a Black woman living in the West. I am very interested in art as empowering change through narration and dialogue.

Through the creation of figurative sculptures and installations I tell the story of Jilo, a Black woman, her struggles and her journey. Her invisibility while being visible, and the irony of this. I experiment with recycled metal, glass, paper and textiles, sometimes pressed into jesmonite and plaster moulds, to reflect the complexities of her experience and who she is. The materials are selected deliberately to symbolise different states of being. For example: metal for strength, latex – invisibility and vulnerability, glass – fragility and paper – media or propaganda.

I am drawn to artists who initiate dialogue about the hidden and unseen to affect change, such as Peju Alatise and Ai Wei Wei.