Given the opportunity, would you willingly try on the experiences of someone’s actual perceptions, attitudes, life experience, physical conditions and emotions like an adventure, with the possibility of gaining insight and understanding into that particular body/mind, like a highly advanced fashionable technology somewhat like 'The Point of View Gun,' in the film, 'The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy', by Douglas Adam? Could you imagine how different the world would be with a technology that automatically causes someone to experience the point of view of another?
The intention behind the portrait series on silk is to show the emotional turmoil experienced by parents of their unarmed children and relatives who have been the victims of police brutally, violence, profiling and how empathy plays a role in having progressive conversation about race and justice. Contemplating the suffering of these individuals has helped me understand my own fears, where I often think of the relationship between my brother and mother and how she could very well wear the pain of these parents. The subject of race can be divisive when we are not open to listening and speaking with the intent of understanding.
The Pain portrait series is an ongoing project. Four of the portraits are hand painted using silk dyes and two portraits are printed using the dye-sublimation process. The beaded flower designs symbolize a distraction from the gamut expressions of grief, as well as the remembrance of life. The delicate, fragile yet tensile silk fiber and beaded patterns contrast with the heavy subject and the scale speaks to the engulfing emotions of Tracy Martin, Geneva Reed-Veal, Samaria Rice, Lezley McSpadden, Esaw Garner, Gloria Darden and many more who all share common threads.