Partnering organization: Lost Artists Collective
Art has given me the space and freedom to reframe narratives about African American people and culture. My art is not fictitious or an imagined existence, it is one rooted in scenes that have nurtured my upbringing in Detroit’s Eastside and Black Bottom neighborhood. It is the narratives is the people in my community I grew up in, of my family, friends and how we loved each other. It is one founded on the vision to uplift humanity and leave a legacy that highlights the beauty and dignity of Black people.
Working primarily in figurative collage, my technique style is intuitive. After finding the right papers, colors, and textures to create moments in time that give off a feel-good elixir reminiscent of Black Bottom and the Harlem Renaissance era, I begin with the eyes and allow my subconscious to connect with a rhythm and freely let the story play out on the canvas. I have been working on this body of work over the last five years.
I am inspired by the aesthetic and talents of Charles White, Gordon Parks, Elizabeth Catlett, and Benny Andrews. Like their works, my collages serve as archives of Black life and resilience; style and pride; music and spirituality. I am often told my work reminds them of a modern day Romare Bearden. However, I see my collages in the traditions of Kerry James Marshall for the use of black paper for most of the figures in my work. I envision myself as a visual griot. My work is created to tell the story of how I see my people, how we lived and the power of our lives.
Through my artistry, I aspire to leave a legacy for my children and grandchildren that paints our rich and complex history. I want my art to serve as a gift of joy from me to the universe and will continue to make an impact long after I am gone.
MY BABY DONE GONE SONG
Medium: Mixed media on canvas
Size: 24" h x 36" w
Note: Judy has committed a portion of the proceeds go back to MM-O-DD for youth programming.