In 1991, scholar Mary Louise Pratt coined the term ‘contact zones’ meaning “social spaces where disparate cultures meet, clash and grapple with each other.”
What happens when individuals from historically marginalized groups are left in peace? What happens when they do not have to expend energy to engage in society in defense of dignity or respect? What if more individuals enjoyed more instances of basking in the softness of just being?
This exhibition presents snapshots of calm moments of Black mundanity by showing subjects in poses and moments that may resonate with viewers as something familiar from their own family albums or camera rolls. The artist hopes this exhibition provides respite from trauma imagery and calls to minimize negative ‘contact zones,’ so that more Black individuals are able to experience more fully, and more often, the peace and softness of quietude.
ABOUT THE ARTIST
Whitney Stanley is an inter-disciplinary artist living and working in Durham, NC. Her main interest is documenting ‘contact zones’ Black people encounter within the diaspora and other groups of people. Her primary practices are film photography, mixed media paintings, textiles, and 3D crafting. Stanley received her Bachelor’s degrees in Anthropology and Economics from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and Juris Doctor from Campbell University. She is currently practicing privacy and life sciences law in-house.
Featured Image: Whitney Stanley, Idella and her friend, 2022, mixed media; canvas, paper, cellophane, ink, oil pastel, wax, acrylic, chalk, and tape