Box Braids no. 3 by Stéphane Alexis
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- Artwork Info
- About the Artist
- About Chains and Crowns
From the series Chains and Crowns
Pigment ink on cotton rag
Edition of 3
Framed + Foamboard backmount and shadowbox frame
Stéphane Alexis is an artist based in Ottawa, Canada. His work stems from his personal experiences, demographics, and sub-demographics in which he belongs, with close attention paid to both conceptual design and aesthetic quality. His desire is to bring attention, focus, and transparency to peoples and communities that are tucked away due to the hardships they face and the unwillingness we have in acknowledging those hardships. Alexis uses these qualities as a bridge, giving insight on issues and circumstances facing these communities, both locally and globally, through his choice of subject matter. He believes that we can only come to solutions if we identify issues; we can do this by communicating openly with each other and allow the negativity and difficulties to come to the surface.
Chains and Crowns
Inspired by my mother’s own hair journey, Chains & Crowns explores different hairstyles rooted in Black cultures as symbols of creativity, resistance and resilience. As the lineage of these hairstyles are followed, we find the opportunity to understand members of the culture not only from a technical standpoint, speaking on structure, maintenance and styling, but the history of the people and persons.
Time-stamped are these hairstyles throughout members of my communal and individual history, as they’ve cycled through periods of oppression and appreciation through the lens of society and the self. Many of these hairstyles originated in Africa and the Caribbean and have not only been repurposed for survival and adaptation, but ingenuity and creativity.
Deeply woven within the roots of Black culture is the influence of style, community, and resilience that has brought growth and character development to many of its members across time. This shifting of character has brought forth a unique perspective to our Western culture. As we arrive in the present moment, we are free to follow the strands of love, contentment, and overall beauty of what we call “Black hair”.
- Stéphane Alexis