Based on a digital photo journal I kept during a recent visit to Jamaica:
home.', is an ongoing, multimedia project, explores the theme of (un)belonging , fostering a sense of personhood and the tensions of negotiating citizenship within and beyond transnational borders.
'home.' disrupts Toronto's utopian conceptualization of multiculturalism and diversity to show that many Black folks—especially first generation youth of the Caribbean diaspora whose identity is always up for interrogation both within and outside of the community—have difficulty with grappling what and where is home. The relevance of 'home' will allow patrons to understand what it means to occupy the liminal boundary of finding self between places you feel both pushed out of and pulled into.
'home: the exhibition' was funded in part by:
The University of Toronto (Scarborough)'s Arts, Culture and Media's Equity and Diversity in the Arts Committee.
home: the exhibition
I used Twine to tell an interactive and narrative-based story about negotiating home through my experiences of living in Toronto as a diasporic Jamaica. I chose to use Rihanna, the Barbadian-born entertainer, to represent myself loosely based off of how she is positioned in Heather D. Russell’s Whose Rihanna? Diasporic Citizenship and Economies of Crossing Over. Russell (2010) cites Wehelyie to interrogates Rihanna’s citizenship by stating, “for a diasporic citizen (such as Rihanna),‘the problematic of belonging’ concerns where ‘subjects locate their political and cultural affiliations’ and these are "circumscribed by various political, economic and cultural constraints' "(p. 301).
In short, Russell (2010) analyzes the star’s complex and dynamic identity and situates her as simultaneously falling outside of what it means to be Barbadian and/or American through, amongst other things, her methods of self-expression.
Though this was an interpolation Russell made of the singer’s identity—and not one that the singer made for herself—I felt deeply connected how she decided to interrogate how or what constitutes being a citizen as my racialized body is scripted as one that does not belong or existence is questioned in Toronto in the same way that it is scripted as not belonging in Jamaica (as I am considered a foreigner).
home/2017/41 x 51/digital
the entries from ‘home: diary’ have been extracted from trips spanning across two years complied into a vsco cam-based photo journal. the photos feature different parts of Jamaica and the city of toronto. i use the entries to discuss the similarities and differences between my country of birth and my country of heritage to interrogate the meaning of citizenship and belonging through my place in the diaspora.
multi-media digital series, in progress
'home' is an ongoing, multimodal project that explores themes of (un)belonging and fostering a sense of personhood. Through different mediums, I attempt to mediate what it means to belong to a city that has branded itself as diverse, amidst a constant questioning of my existence within this space, while trying to negotiate selfhood across borders.
In its original conception, it was as a daily entry into a public visual journal of one of my trips back "home"/country where my parents are from, but has since expanded to an ongoing project that grows alongside myself.
single-channel, iPhone shot video with sound/0:54/2016