Lorna Simpson

Lorna Simpson first became well-known in the mid-1980s for her large-scale photograph-and-text works that confront and challenge narrow, conventional views of gender, identity, culture, history and memory. With the African-American woman as a visual point of departure, Simpson uses the figure to examine the ways in which gender and culture shape the interactions, relationships and experiences of our lives in contemporary multi-racial America.                                

http://lsimpsonstudio.com/biography.html

I had come across Simpson’s work previously and dismissed it as it was from an African-American perspective. However, after researching around themes surrounding identity politics and reflecting on my environment, I feel that her themes are applicable to Britain too. I particularly want to challenge in my work narrow and conventional classifications and thier meanings.

Untitled (guess who’s coming to dinner), 2001 – http://lsimpsonstudio.com/photographicworks14.html

From the title, and without having further information on the image, I imagine it to be about perception; judgement made on physical appearence in terms of hair style. Their is a lot of stereotyping particularly within black communities of what a particular hairstyle means. These stereotypes have social, historical, and economic connotations which are aspects I’d like to explore and examine further. I particularly want to chanllenge narrow perceptions (some of my own), of what it means to be black.

More work : http://lsimpsonstudio.com/index.html

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