For centuries, the stories, lineages, and cultures of people of color (POC) have been suppressed and erased. There are only three roles that POC are allowed to comfortably occupy in this country: gangsters, civil rights activists, and slaves. White history only finds POC relevant when they are one of the three options. Through my art, I aim to make the viewer question the notion of history as it has been taught to us. My project provides a space for POC to preserve their personal narratives without white history sugarcoating or whitewashing it.
In The Sugar That Doesn’t Melt, I created gold embossed family trees of my white side of the family, as it was easy to trace them back to the early 1700s in Germany. By contrast I created horrifying imagined histories for the black side of my family, as their lineage is nearly impossible to follow past the 1940s. the two histories live together in the same frame, creating my own personal lineage, which hung on the walls of the original installation.