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Personal experiences hold images and objects together either with, or in place of memories, people, feelings and so on. The pieces I’ve created borrow imagery and iconography of vibrant Belizean life and culture while expanding on the practice of veneration of figures through art and the adornment of charms to express devotion, along with any other object of significant meaning or context.
Using painting in combination with metalsmithing, the works discuss a narrative between objects and their attachments or connotations to queer identity and as well are used to present the figures as beings of worship.
The figure is important to my process of documenting the uniquely Belizean queer experience. While I use bright, heavily saturated Caribbean iconography as meaningful tools to represent an unspoken minority within an already small country, my strong Catholic upbringing infuses the work with a ritualistic aim of sanctifying queer bodies. My figurative pieces are my ways of making queer bodies sacred and accounted for, as well as representing them in ways that encourage them and give an insight as to what our history could have looked like.
The local artists of Belize all carry a specific spirit and vibrancy in their work. I look to them to feed my art and create a base for my concepts. Borrowing styles from other Belizean artists such as Walter Castillo, and Alex Sanker, tropical themes unify the majority of my work while they are contrasted with themes of containment and comment on the mental and social oppression of queer individuals in the celebratory, breez, beachy landscapes of my home country
Danielle Muzina; Jeanne Beaver
Most of the work is done in Oils and acrylics on wood panel or stretched canvas. The general theme centers around Gender roles and gender dynamics in relation to gender expression as well. These themes are explored within a Caribbean native perspective. The works use a gestural abstraction of figures and bright saturated tones overlayed one another to imply a casualness along with wrought complex energy. Underlying themes of religion come u as a way to venerate the queer body and make them sacred as often not due to erasure. There is one Metals piece, a enameled copper brooch, that is directly related to one of the paintings, and explores the imposed responsibility of women to protect themselves from inevitable male hierarchy. The entire show is around 6 works, 5 paintings and 1 metalsmithing piece.
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This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 4.0 International License.
Gill, Chris, "Unprecedented" (2020). B.A./B.S. Practicum Group Exhibit (ART 499). 46.