Commentary No. 1
“Anguish and grief, like darkness and rain, may be depicted; but gladness and joy, like the rainbow, defy the skill of pen or pencil. – Frederick Douglass.
Commentary No. 2
I wander away from the screen
Tear holes in the routine.
For a brief moment, I have time on my hands.
Where do I begin?
I will hold your eyes, see me.
You watch as I read the songlines on your palms, caress your forks in the road.
You can breathe in, but not out again
If you so choose.
Where is your heart’s compass? Where’s your heart’s Due North?
It can take time for messages to come ashore.
It can take time for the vowels to sail forth past the ego:
The consonants seem to take even longer. God knows
It takes injury for this mesmerist to rein in her consciousness:
To peel the old paint on her story.
Only through art can I languish and pretend not to exist.
Commentary No. 3
Writing brought by abstract painting to the paper.
Commentary No. 4
With a slow burning heart
I drive to the pharmacy with my guitar all the hours of the 24.
Fame is a drug on prescription all the hours of the 24.
After a lifetime of searching I found my biological father on Facebook. My shadow self is battling to hold onto me. She’s cutting my clothes to smithereens.
Commentary No. 5
One day I will write about inner peace.
Growing in seedpods.
Nurtured in short bursts of poetry.
Seagulls hover over me
Waiting for yesterday’s bread.
Let the NOW be of use to you angel, seer, believer,
Friend, ally, I love you.
How do we reconcile our unconscious desires?
How do we fly above ourselves to
highlight, to minimize, to free
ourselves from the loop of assumptions,
groove of greed.
Juice of injustice.
Commentary No. 6
An Englishman rolls down his car window to shout the word nigger at me.
A white colleague calls me a cross between a dog and a slave.
How do I reconcile this information?
Do I laugh it off? Do I take myself less seriously?
Transcend my pride
My feeling of total wipeout.
With unconditional love…
“I love you, please forgive me, I’m sorry, thank you.”
Commentary No. 7
Here I write in the house I was conceived in. If I am mistaken, I go about it quietly, fastidious as I am in matters of delicacy. My great great grand-mother Alice (the ancestor with the long tail) never tired of telling me that forgetfulness is for the mind with pinhole capacity.
“How are you my darling apparition?” I say giving Alice an impromptu kiss. A line coruscates her forehead. She waits. She frowns. She tumbles into the other world.
After an interval, Alice re-appears as a shimmering blur. Her blurred outline manifests a balance beam and she hops up onto the four-inch wide platform and strikes a pose in the dark recess of our wooden house: empowering the occupants to set sail to the New World.
Whether our family reaches its destination depends upon the wellbeing of our slaves.
Commentary No. 8
In Sierra Leone, West Africa, everything is broken
in pieces strewn apart.
My ancestors’ medals
that were pinned to their chests
are now buried in the family archives.
Today in our Freetown neighborhood, it’s aching with rain. I’m waiting for my sister to finish up her meeting
with the Director of Reparations.
In the ether her words comingle,
bare her soul like an abstract painting.
I wish I had the perfect umbrella for her; but I don’t.
In Sierra Leone we’re all in the waiting room.
Commentary No. 9
Limbo only meant to be temporary, not held in this position, in this way for all my life.
Commentary No. 10
The Nomad Commentaries — Artist’s Statement.
In attempting to document my personal experience, I found myself in an autobiographical dilemma. I was yet to become socially aware and still had to become politically conscious of the black diaspora which informed my artistic roots. But when I came to articulate this journey, I realized the Eurocentric linear narrative formula could never adequately explain what I was feeling, and I searched for an art form to combine the diaphanous threads of my lost indigenous peoples, my Eurocentric scholastic disciplines and my vivid childhood as a child of the punk era: a child of The Clash and The Sex Pistols and the clash of cultures.
My early training as a dancer gave me the courage to investigate and discover that it is vital to find a common universality, a non-linear language. The following years were immersed in transcribing what I felt to be messages from my ancient past: layers of identity blurring boundaries and stirring my cellular memory. It took several years before my instincts led to me to produce documentaries as a catalyst for positive social change.
Furthermore, by employing text, video and mixed media and floating together photographic, painted and digital images, I discovered how to connect the fragments of my mixed African-European identity and begin the journey of reaching outside of myself to communicate messages of faith, healing, oneness and love.