2014, as installed in i found god in myself, commissioned by Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture (currently on view)
burned out & dyed silk velvet, acrylic fingernails, nail polish, disco ball spinner, glue, lectern, trophy base, black male figurine candle
In Purple Girl Swirl, a lectern is dressed with hand-dyed & devoréd velvet as a ‘disco ball’ made from acrylic fingernails. I choose velvet and acrylic fingernails because each is highly performative, can be either tacky or luxe depending on the wearer, and is highly tactile. Meditating on the emotional timbre of Shange’s lady in purple, I created drawings. I then used the devore method to burn and brush these images away from the velvet, leaving it more fragile. The scraping of the velvet nap complements the material and motion of the hanging nail ball. The velvet and nail sculptures adorn the oratory architecture of the lectern, which implies a speaker.
Miss Africa acrylic false fingernails, LA Colors nail polish
15 in diameter
Fake fingernails from Hong Kong, Vietnam, United States, and Korea are layered on a sphere and coated in LA Colors nail polish, considering the extravagance of beauty products and the migrations of industry & workers. Shown in Balls: Reordering Black Maleness, Obsidian Art, Minneapolis, 2010
Acrylic false fingernails, nail polish, styrofoam
A larger-than-life size bust of Ho Chi Minh layered in acrylic fingernails represents the history around labor movements and the Vietnamese-American salon industry.
42 in x 32 in x 13 in
2000 acrylic fake fingernails, nail polish, rhinestones, metal, wood
60 in x 40 in x 22 in
Sculpture made from 2000 artist-made replica acrylic fingernails in the shape of an ascending 200m running course. Fingernails were individually hand painted after the manicure that Florence Griffith-Joyner wore during the 1988 Olympics, when she set the 200 m world record. Sculpture is 200m track at 1:100 scale.
18 in x 24 in
For sale in SHOP
acrylic fake fingernails, paper
Own a set of the manicure that Florence Griffith-Joyner wore during the 1988 Olympics, when she set the 200 m world record. Fingernails are hand-painted in artist-designed package.
Porcelain, office chair, metal, leather, rubber, jumper cables, Reebok Classics, window
Jumper cables connect an office chair piled with 1700 porcelain tile pieces to a pair of gently used classic running shoes. Each porcelain tile is pressed with a impression of a Reebok logo taken from internal company mold references. This is a personal piece about giving up being a sneakerhead. In a gesture that represents drug dealing, completion, surrender, and shoeicide, the pair of shoes is hung out of a window in Harlem, NYC. Jumper cables create a tension and “charge” a metaphorical breakdown between producer and consumer classes, and histories of East-West trade.
hanging sneaker view from outside