Artist Statement about "Between Sisters and Spirits":
“Wherever two or three woman are gathered together, there is the spirit and authority of Sande.”
“Women create Sande on the spot where they group together, sharing with one another, excluding men. This space is defined by privacy and secrecy- Women together in their womanhood, in a free exchange of words and actions among sisters -This is Sande.”
-Sylvia Ardyn Boone from "Radiance From The Waters: Ideals of Feminine Beauty in Mende Art"
The duality of women in this body of work project the spirit and its connection to the physical world, which reinforces the bond amongst women and how they coexist in the physical and spiritual realms. The mask seen in the work are my interpretation of the Mende mask, specifically created for young girls being initiated into Sande. These masks are created as a reminder that human beings have a dual existence viewed as one body.
In this work, I am also exploring the different signs and symbols that help define the space the women reside in. In my previous works, the backgrounds communicated a specific sign, symbol, or icon to assist the viewer in their conversation with the work. Those signs and symbols helped define the perspective of the image. This body of work transitions the women and their place of residence into a spiritual realm, where the symbolism is less defined, the shapes are more organic, and the icons are left for the viewer to ponder and creating a space for the women to be birthed into.