Black & Blue BS Theory contemplates the bootstrap theory that we should work hard to pull ourselves up from nothing, a concept that romanticizes labor without full consideration of the hierarchical view of who is expected to perform the labor.
Not everyone starts from nothing. When you’re born into a household that understands the system, culture, and language of that nation, you have knowledge and resources. If you are white, there will always be a safety net despite class. As a country, we as Americans still take for granted the blood, sweat and tears of Black and Brown people who literally built this country and are still the ones who service, feed and maintain it. I reference the physical labor that they work themselves black and blue 7 days a week doing menial jobs just to survive and the emotional labor of repeatedly having to prove their American-ness. I aim to ask questions of who is deemed deserving and who can be American without any hyphens.
I replicated moon drop grapes through the mold making process; these curious fleshy bodies that are visually “erotic” because they are both phallic and vaginal to consider how a patriarchal system works to polarize us through the gender binary, the racial construct and class division. These grapes were created by geneticists in 2004 and have become low supply / high demand fruits. Why are we spending energies to create more luxury goods at the expense of laboring bodies? Why aren’t we using our intellect and technology to advance all of us, rather than very few of us?
Black & Blue BS Theory
Ceramic, metal, gym rope, thread, concrete
234” x 32” x 32”
Photos by Terry Brown Photography