nonconsensual photography (2019)
On a visit to the 2019 Faith Ringgold exhibition at the Serpentine Gallery, Ifeanyi Awachie and Derica Shields were photographed by white gallery-goers three separate times without their consent. Nonconsensual Photography is a performance that allowed them to articulate and respond to the experience and seek recourse where no other recourse was possible. The work is informed by hooksian and “fugitive” (to quote Akwugo Emejulu) understandings of black womanhood; it explores the relationship between arts institutions, black art and black audiences and calls for institutional change.
On Read (2019)
On Read is a moving image work exploring the experience of ghosting.
Jordyn Woods Shares the Truth (2019)
Jordyn Woods Shares the Truth is a series of photographs of Cleveland Cavaliers player Tristan Thompson overlaid with quotes from the March 2nd, 2019 episode of Jada Pinkett-Smith’s Facebook TV show, Red Table Talk. The episode, which hinges on a conversation between Pinkett-Smith and 21 year-old family friend Jordyn Woods, took place following accusations on social media that Woods had been having an affair with Thompson, who is the ex-partner of Khloe Kardashian. The photo series explores public apology, in particular, the public scrutiny under which prominent black women, rather than the involved men, are routinely placed in the wake of sexual scandal. The series proposes that Thompson, rather than Woods, should have appeared on Red Table Talk, as Thompson is the party would have been guilty of infidelity had the affair taken place. Moreover, Woods stated in the episode that Thompson kissed her at the party that sparked the accusations. Layering, in subtitle-style text, the questions Pinkett-Smith posed to Woods over images of Thompson, the photo series restages the conversation, creating a virtual space in which Thompson is the individual who, in Woods’ words, is “put to the test.” Woods’ absence from the images is a suggestion that rather than leaving black women to serve as proxies for their morality, black men should be held accountable for their actions.