Description / Statement
The project “BLACKNESS IS”, seeks to highlight and challenge nuanced ideas of Black identity through the presentation of questions and statements blended with landscape scenes of a desert, an environment known to be oppressive towards human life. Human ecology positions individual development in relationship to one’s environment and social context. Without properly analyzing social context, our identities, however fluid, cannot fully be understood, appreciated, or celebrated. This is especially relevant for Blackness, in the American context: with a past and present history of anti-Blackness, constantly and uniquely shifting presentation and manifestation over time, but remaining equally challenging, much like the desert.
Kevin Claiborne (b. 1989, Washington, D.C.) is a multidisciplinary conceptual artist currently living and working in New York whose work examines and questions intersections of identity, environment, & mental health within the Black American experience. Using photography as a foundation, often using language as material. Kevin views his art both weapon and armor in the fight for liberation. He is a graduate of the historically Black college North Carolina Central University (2012), Syracuse University (2016), and currently an MFA Visual Arts Candidate at Columbia University (2021).
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