A seat at the table - The metaphorical phrase "a seat at the table" is representative of one's ability to claim both agency and power in the decision-making processes that directly and indirectly affect their well-being and livelihood. An opportunity that has limited black women collectively for generations. A common narrative in my work is a realization that our seats at the table don't have to be earned or taken, but that both our seats and tables are already in our possession. We just need to use them.
In this exhibition, each girl's seat and table share the same space as them whether they know it or not. Their seats occupy the center of the table, subsequently centering them in the narrative. The tables, which are round rather than rectangular, can be viewed as their ark, providing both passage and shelter throughout their lives. The seat, which is also round, represents their perpetual agency. The break in the table represents their exit route out of childhood and the relative access that others have to them. All but one table provides both access and exit. The one that is closed earmarks a cautionary tale as one of these girls (symbolic characters) will not make it to full adulthood.
Ark - something that affords protection and safety, a place of refuge
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