After a roll call by African Voices Magazine for artists to submit their work for an exhibition to commemorate the legendary Gordon Parks, I decided to try my luck. The hardest part is always making a selection and we could only submit two pieces but after I sent out the work, I almost forgot about it until I received a reply.
I was in! I couldn't believe my luck! Out of hundreds of artists my work was chosen and not just that. My pieces were chosen to honor the legendary Gordon Parks. This was my first group exhibition and I was elated.
The biggest and best surprise was that "A Crown of Locs" the center piece was of the exhibition. The first of works one would see when entering the gallery was the image of those long dreadlocks that adorned a head against the vivid blue sky. It was right next to a beautiful painting of Gordon Parks.
Getting to know the people behind Savae Brooklyn who made the exhibition happen together with African Voices was an inspiration. Meeting other artists not just from New York but from all over the States was fantastic.
When I thought no one was going to understand where I am from, Suriname, that little country in between the Guyana's", Mel Wright another photographer stepped forward and said that not only did he know where Suriname was, he even visited Paramaribo the capital. He was a veteran who travelled the world with his camera in hand. Mel was just one of the many wonderful people I met. Being in the company of so many great artists is just priceless.
The title "A Choice of Weapons" also struck a chord with me. Mr. Parks used his camera as a weapon by portraying social injustice and racism in an unprecedented way. I think I felt the connection because I have been trying to do the same with Natural Hair. The difference is I called it "Shooting for Justice". By capturing the beauty of Natural Hairstyles I also hope to change the perception of natural hair and bring to light the social injustice of unequal rights regarding African strands.