Artist Blog

Every week an artist whose single image was published by Der Greif is given a platform in which to blog about contemporary photography.

Jade Rodgers

Jul 21, 2020 - Michael Hicks

Maryland and Brooklyn-based artist Jade Rodgers makes stunning, monumental portraits in her new series "CRWN".

 

From Jade:

 

"CRWN" is a visual representation of my desire to preserve Black joy. Since the protests began again, it felt as though I was being bombarded with Black death on a daily basis. My desire to be active in the fight for Black lives was overcome by the trauma of seeing Black people being beaten and killed. Social media is ironically televising the revolution and amidst a pandemic no less. These images exist to show the importance of care for Black bodies. Highlighting a part of Black culture, our hair, allows us to connect over something other than the mourning of our Brothers and Sisters. "CRWN" is a reminder that Black people exist, and that we deserve to be protected, nurtured, and loved.

 
These photographs are shot digitally in domestic spaces of the participant’s home or my own home. I use fabrics and colored backgrounds chosen by the participant or myself. The backgrounds are meant to be representative of the individual as well as a depiction of an altar. These altar-like backgrounds are meant to highlight the importance of the participants’ hair. Their identity is kept relatively concealed.

 

The anonymity of each person allows the viewer to conceive their own ideas or feelings about the work. As well as to imagine themselves in this way that is deserving of admiration and attention. I have found that the most important part of this work is the conversation that has stemmed from each session. Each person has their own connection to their hair but we as Black people have shared experiences. I have to keep in mind that the project is far from finished and I hope to continue this process of connectivity during these times of separation and degradation."

 

See more of Jade's work on her website

Follow her on Instagram: @Jadethesage