This is dedicated to all of the children who come from neighborhoods like those that I grew up in–poor. You may have been given less opportunity but let this marginalization make you more hungry to reach for the things you want out of your life. Gone are the days where the only way out was to become a sports star or a singer. Gone are even the days where you needed to choose a career that seemed like a sure fire way to make it into the middle class–gone is pragmatism for children of color. I sought to achieve what I was passionate about knowing it would be difficult but I realized some time ago that if you are doing something rarely done before it means it is something in desperate need of being done. I am made it as an artist and you can too! Find something you love to do and you’ll forever find bliss. Thank God for helping me find clay.
I am very pleased to have been named a United States Artist Barr Fellow. This prestigious award comes with a 50,000 dollar monetary award. This is significantly impact my work in being able to create a new body of work and having the financial ability to work on aspects that were previously unavailable.
I want to thank the jurors, United States Artist and those who nominated and supported me. An especially big thank you to Shannon Goff a professor and artist at Penn State University who saw something in me some time ago and encouraged me to continue to expand my practice into activism, public speaking and to be fearless in my art making.