"The work The Giverny Document is a three channel installation inspired by my time in Giverny, France in 2016. The film projections are multi textural and are concerned with Black women’s safety and bodily autonomy. I am transfixed by our ability to invoke creative virtuosity through performance while simultaneously navigating and subverting capitalism’s claims to our bodies as spaces of commodified production. Josephine Baker swings cryptically in a gilded cage, Nina Simone is enraptured and enraptures with her direct gaze and affecting fingertips, while Monet and Fred Hampton look on silently. My favorite part of this work are the interviews I conducted with Black women and girls while stationed at the corner of 116th and Malcolm X. “Do you feel safe?” was and is my query. The shows name, Tactile Cosmologies is a nod to Hortense Spillers who in her paper, Shades of Intimacy, makes reference to Constance Classen’s The Deepest Sense: A Cultural History of Touch. Spillers is concerned with the haptic and how touch was and is a metric for determining how free one is. Does the body have the ability to ward off another’s touch? Does the body have integrity, is the body protected by juridical power? Do you even have a body or are you simply available flesh? Most importantly, do you feel safe?" -Ja’Tovia Gary
The Evidence of Things Not Seen (currently in production)
The Evidence of Things Not Seenis a portrait of one woman’s effort to transcend the trauma of her history. A quixotic exploration of the interior self, the filmmaker embarks on an intimate journey to explore her most foundational relationships as well as the pivotal events which helped to shape her.
Giverny I (Négresse Impériale), 2017
This filmic collage— shot on location in Claude Monet's Gardens in Giverny, France— aims to examine the precarious nature of Black women’s bodily integrity, the ethics of care as resistance work, and how class position shapes the contours of violence. Set against the backdrop of the West's continued global imperialist campaigns and its historical artistic canon, this experimental film features a mélange of high definition video, archival footage, and analog animation to re-tell the history of modernity from an oppositional gaze.