BROWN SUGAR: WHERE WE AT
FRIDAY, AUGUST 30, 7PM
BROWN SUGAR: WHERE WE AT- presents the work of ten select Portland based black women visual artists of different mediums. It’s a creation of space for Black women and femmes to celebrate, and illuminate their creative positionalities through the expression of art, dialogue, and collective harmony. This event is in response to an imperative need to address the ever-present feeling and out-of-context existence of black women/femmes in Portland art culture.
Multidisciplinary artist Asha Harper seeks to breath new life into unwanted fashion items through up-cycling carefully selected garments.
Asha wants to challenge the way society perceives waste, in the hopes that one woman’s waste is another woman’s treasure, where creativity can help evolve want-nots into a sustainable way of living, starting with homeware. Her passion for up-cycling and making do with assets she collects helps her to create new formulas, not only for home goods, but also for footwear design which is her current occupation.
Illustrator Bernadette Little experiments with a variety of mediums and techniques to explore the nuances of everyday life and people through portraiture.
In her series “Chapters”, Bernadette asked each of the subjects to title a chapter of their lives, and tell her a few sentences about their title. The focus of the series is to capture a moment in someone else’s story and provide a glimpse into our shared experiences of life.
Mixed media artist and curator Christine Miller approaches concept first, medium second.
After years of research and development, she is excited to debut her simultaneous projects “Alligator Bait” and “Blackphoria”. “Alligator Bait” focuses on internalized oppression with Black Americana memorabilia, while "Blackphoria" uses color/design to redefine visual narratives of Blackness.
Danielle McCoy's work explores themes of identity, race, gender, religion, culture, and mental health through words, graphic design, and book-like objects.
Interrogating the ways in which she has internalized the messages that society sends black women about their value, Danielle developed this series as a humorously sardonic approach to confronting those not-so-constructive metrics she uses to assign value to herself.
Writer, dancer and photographer Intisar Abioto uses her art to wander, ask, stir, find, know, and dream. To begin, end, start again.
Sugar Lee: A self-and-sister referential work.
Julia Bond is a fashion designer, dancer, and jewelry artist whose work touches on ideas of colorism and ‘unnatural appearances’ within the black community.
Through her project Otherly Onlies, Julia uses jewelry as a medium to discuss the idea that Blackness is not singular, but multifaceted.
Nia Musiba aims for a well-balanced art practice, encompassing printing, graphic design and digital arts, as well as performance, community based arts, video, and poetry. Through these various disciplines, her practice focuses on things both unique and shared about the condition of living.
Ruby Joy White
Writer-violinist-dancer-Sagittarius Ruby Joy White is a curator for music and art, a panel moderator, and a Content Writer for ‘Art For Ourselves’, an online grassroots community publication for QTBIPOC artists, activists, and cultural workers. She serves as the Director of the Multicultural Resource Center at Reed College, and is a consultant for equity, anti-racist, and identity/positionality workshops.
Multidisciplinary artist Sabrina Powelll creates from a variety of materials, including leather, wood, fiber, photography, painting, and floral design.
These plant holders represent protective hairstyles and the growth that happens beneath them. The braids are up-cycled extensions Sabrina has worn in the past, which she manipulated using fire. Each piece is embellished with various beads and jewelry to exhibit the diversity expressed among the hairstyle, forming unique pieces that symbolize the strength, confidence, and ownership Black women feel when wearing them.
Salimatu Amabebe is the founder and director of Black Feast, a food/art event that celebrates black artists and writers through culinary interpretations of their work. Amabebe’s work focuses on the intersection of food and art, drawing from family memories, recipes, and black culinary history.
Something You Can’t Find in the Kitchen is a photo and sculpture series that explores family history as it relates to the physical body and gender identity.