These works by American artist Brittney Leeanne Williams focus on the figure, more specifically on the black body, as a site of suffering, mourning, and memorialisation yet capable of transcendence and transformation. They interrogate the duality of the body in the landscape as well as the body landscaped. The environments featured in her works are assembled from memory, art history, and flat colour fields.
The bodies engage with their environments, often through contorted forms, mimetic of an undulating landscape, but as a means of revealing the traumatic violence and systematic oppression that have dictated the orientation and placement of the black body, and especially the black female body.
Bodies in red recur throughout her practice, drawing their form from excavated personal family traumas, as well as investigating black communal grievances. Red has become a key colour, enabling the figures to emit a signal, like an ambulance siren or red pulsating light, taking command and authoritatively demanding attention from the viewer.
Brittney Leeanne Williams is a Chicago-based artist, whose works are layered with poignance and history, interacting with present-day black experiences in America.