Yon Afro Presents (Re)Imagining Spaces and Raising Consciousness of Existence
If People Make Glasgow, which People will be allowed to Make a future Glasgow?
This exhibition seeks to amplify the lives of Black women and/+ Women of Colour in Scotland, and telling stories which are often ignored.
(Re) Imagining Self explores the private vs public spheres and the presentation of self and identity through the lens of Women of Colour (WOC) in Glasgow. The works shed light on how the Black Other is viewed.
(Re) Imagining Self challenges the concepts of positive initiatives, the performance of being ourselves and examines WOC and/+ Black women’s existence as resistance within social, political and geographical environments.
The selection of work on display reflects the artistic and eclectic talents of Najma Abukar, Layla Roxanne Hill, Sekai Machache, and Adebusola Debora Ramsay.
Whilst each of these artists approaches their craft in a different way, the thread that runs throughout their work is an exploration of issues related to the particularities of the lives of Black women and/+ women of colour, including in the form of paintings, photography, sculpture and text.
Abukar’s Black is the Colour of my Soul (2018) is a photographic portrait series. Each portrait is inspired by a line from the song Four Women by Nina Simone/ Laura Izibor/Ledisi: ‘My Skin is Black’, ‘My Arms Are Long’, ‘My Hair is Wolly’, ‘My Back is Strong’, ‘My Skin is Yellow’, ‘My Hair is Long’, ‘My Skin is Tan’, ‘My Hair is Fine’, ‘My Skin is Brown’, ‘My Manner is Tough’.
Hill’s work Mulatto Manifesto: The Re-Telling of Tragic (2018) uses experimental mixed media and text responsive to the changing spaces within Govanhill Baths reminding us of the ways interracial identities are always shaped by environments.
Machache present works from her photo-series Musoro (2016). Revisiting her previous video-piece Braiding Across a Room (2015), which is based on the tradition of braiding that is central to many African cultures and has been transmuted across many generations throughout the African Diaspora. Machache presents Braiding Across a Pool (2018) a sculptural performative work for made in response to the space at the Govanhill Baths.
Ramsay presents a series of abstract works rooted in her affinity with and use of vibrant colours. Through her pieces Origins (2014), Untitled/ Viscera (2017), Twists & Turns (2018) and obfuscation of reality (2018), Ramsay explores the concept of racialization, its intersection with other forms of oppression, and inter-generational trauma.