The Closet As Archive explores the ways in which the concept of memory, beauty, and desire is essential to storytelling. My work looks at concepts of meaning in dress while considering migration, identity, and transformation.
Throughout the history of art and image-making, beauty as an aesthetic impulse has been simultaneously idealized and challenged, and the relationship between beauty and identity has become increasingly complex within contemporary art and popular culture. My work challenges the relationship between beauty and desire by examining the representation as reinvention.
Beauty as an act is fraught with meanings and attitudes about class, race, gender, and aesthetics. I have a curiosity about the closet as a space where identities are formed, and the archive as a treasured space that holds underdeveloped secrets and ideas. Through a sequence of questions, I photograph items pulled out for the camera. They are loaded with narratives that give the garment or object a life of its own, containing stories of travel, family memory, and personal empowerment
The Closet As Archive explores the ways in which the concept of memory, beauty, and desire are essential to storytelling. Curator Kalia Brooks writes:
“The work shown in The Closet as Archive explores the innermost aspects of ourselves, symbolized through the closet space and archival boxes, and how we perform our identities based on how we desire to image ourselves to the world. By investigating the closet as a site where beauty, memory, and labor are enacted, this exhibition celebrates the closet as a space of empowerment for individuals authoring their own identities contrary to social or cultural convention.”
The photographs in the show include images from residential closets and photographic archives, garments found in collections, clothing that evokes personal and cultural identity, and closets and cabinets that store photographs.
By investigating the closet as a site where beauty, memory, and labor are enacted, this exhibition celebrates the closet as a space of empowerment for individuals authoring their own identities, contrary to social or cultural convention.