Visions of Paradise Artist Statement
I am interested in the complex dualities that exist within the paradigms of Black identity as they relate to the legacies of colonization. Utilizing the lens as a framework for engaging with sculpture and performance-my practice is an archive for the negotiation of cultural norms in the construction of utopia. Visions of Paradise is a multimedia performative work in which I have created an imagined landscape called Paradise and utilize humor to investigate western understandings of utopia via the travel industry. This body of work seeks to unpack the construction of identity across caribbean landscapes as colonial legacies impact present contemporary travel practices. I define this project as an alternative anthropological work in which I research advertisements, cultural phenomena, photographs and data to unpack the myth of Paradise. The findings from my excursions are archival material of fantasized places activated through the body and objects. This work is presented by three fictional characters, Paradise, The Tourist and The Travel Agent–who guide the viewer through the archives of Paradise.