Andre Woolery

I want to create a wide prism of Blackness that beams light in all directions. Too often Black is oversimplified into a racialized cube or windowpane that absorbs its multidimensional nature. I want to challenge this flat representation through emboldened imagery, injecting blackness into “white” space, generating discourse, and pushing boundaries of mediums as a tool to push the boundaries of Blackness.

My subject matter is the exploration of Black identity, culture and history. Too often the narratives surrounding Black experience and existence are undocumented, altered or one-dimensional. What it means to be Black is not static or a monolithic term that has to succumb to historical context. Blackness links the experiences of the African diaspora so it remains a dynamic and moving target. I want to create visual language that defines who we are through identity, captures our power through culture, and defines our paths through history.

My art practice will strive to spark dynamic discourse that takes into account a collective perspective rather than a singular one. We’ve moved away from singular representatives into a digital world with connected voices. Now is the perfect time to engage what it means to be Black through a cross pollination of Black perspectives. Art is for everyone and, this way, we all play a role. As an artist I can be a conductor that leads an orchestra to create a composition that elicits truer sound.

To achieve this I use technology to keep up with the evolving notion of Blackness. Technology allows for an exchange of communication that creates data to inform. As a result the work will generate byproducts of our connectivity as another medium in my artwork alongside the paint, pushpins, and images. Artwork will incorporate digital behaviors and principles such being more open-source, real time, social, and media driven.

I want each artwork to be collaboration towards an understanding of the Black experience.

Andre grew up between Morristown, NJ and St. Ann, Jamaica. The stark contrast in racial demography between the two made him acutely sensitive to the role race plays in forming an individual’s sense of personal identity, history, and culture. His work is grounded in this perspective.