The aim of this website shows everything that I’ve been taught and offers an overview of my development as an artist. From producing sound installations and pieces of music, to creating soundscapes and collaborating with filmmakers and artists.
Within this portfolio are two very personal pieces that speak to my experience as a young African-American man. There are also elements of collaboration that offer a glimpse of my attempts to navigate my way through other possibilities that a career in sound art and design might offer.
In creating this portfolio, there is the work and then, the work behind the work. Crawling outside my anxiety has been the biggest obstacle to overcome. The first two years in this programme were spent trying to avoid being judged, so I seldom presented my work. This final year has meant that there were no hiding places and I had to finally confront my self-doubt. While still a work in progress, I have learned to collaborate with other artists, discuss and follow a brief and work as part of a team. I’ve even plucked up the courage to upload my music and soundscapes to be heard by the outside world.
I would have to say that the pivotal moment for me came in Year Two, when I was introduced to the Jennifer Stoever book, The Sonic Color Line, where she discusses how black sound versus white listening is used to perpetuate injustice and inequality in American race relations. This resonated with me and I felt drawn to this exploration in my art. I wanted to understand the role of sound and race in American culture and to underline its power. The inspiration behind my original work is linked to the idea of somehow giving a voice to the voiceless and to speak for those who can no longer speak. This is particularly true when it comes to my sound installation, INTER (FEAR) ENCE.
Another piece of work that I am particularly proud of is my visual EP, Space ∑rror. It is an extended play with afrofuturist lofi inspired music and ambient soundscapes that I have spent the better part of the year composing, while curating visual imagery that gave context to the sounds that I created. The production is inspired by the afrofuturist work of Flying Lotus, Teebs and Ras G- this piece also pays tribute to 1970’s Blaxploitation films and Sun Ra and his idea of space travel.
Further to the building of this portfolio is a collaboration with Kaush Chorlie, a final year illustration student at London College of Communication. She created a piece called Consumption Odyssey for the Beyond 2001: New Horizons show at LCC. The brief was to compose an original soundscape or composition to celebrate the 50th anniversary of Stanley Kubrick’s: 2001 a Space Odyssey. As I have been gaining a reputation for my interest in afrofuturism, I was pleased to be asked to do this. This piece was well-received and I was proud to play a part in it.
The last entry into this portfolio is Six Minutes at the Grand Plaza, a short film set in London where I worked for three days as the location sound mixer and recordist; it was my first time taking up these two roles on a film production. My role in the film was to offer technical no-how to the production and to make sure that my contribution yielded the results that the director hoped for. I was nervous to begin with, because I didn’t want to disappoint, but in the end I was pleased with the quality of the sound and appreciated the positive feedback that I received.