“Landscape II, 14th street”
Spray enamel, acrylic, glass beads, resin, on canvas
66 x 32”
“Landscape I, (Sameness)”
These works explore the identity of gang culture that was prominent in my childhood, and its relationship to the definition of landscape. Landscapes reflect a living synthesis of people and place that is vital to local and national identity. The character of a landscape helps define the self-image of the people who inhabit it and a sense of place that differentiates one region from other regions. It is the dynamic backdrop to people's lives.
I use a variety of materials to create a sense of place, while also referencing the idea of identity that is shaped by the environment. Through the use of visual metaphors, the work explores the relationship between identity and place. The use of glass beads, paint, and resin replicate the textures found on inner-city roads, referring to the intersection "14th Street" which was used by a local gang from Miami Beach as a calling card. The black and white colors of the works are the colors the gang used to identify themselves.
“Landscape III, Overlay (detail)”
Charcoal on paper
In the piece "Overlay," I explore the use of gold teeth, known as "golds" or "fronts," as a landscape and as symbols of status in gang culture in the South East. The work "Sameness" examines the uniformity of this culture, employing the balaclava to represent a landscape in both the physical and metaphorical sense. The oversized balaclava is a relatable symbol of cultural experience for those who have lived in gang culture. By exploring the physical and psychological characteristics of gang culture, I look to create a dialogue between the concept of landscape in relation to identity and place.
Charcoal on paper
102 x 72”