Art has been a part of my life since inception. Decades spent roaming through the galleries of The Art Institute of Chicago, where my mother was employed; afternoons of sharing literary insights with my grandmother; a love of textiles, fashion design and sewing passed down from two generations; a home filled with sounds of jazz, blues, gospel and R&B; and hours of captivating performances at venues throughout the city.

At the exact time that artistic creation was being nurtured, my curiosity for things related to history and the media was also forming. Breakfast discussions with my dad about the way in which the news was reported fueled a fascination with tape recorders and my red typewriter. From the first day that I sat at the knees of my elders telling tall and not so tall tales, I became a collector of stories. After years of artistic endeavors and expertise in media relations and production, my passions and purpose converged.

It is fair to say that my artistic expressions have a decidedly activist slant that occupies a space of resistance. As a life-long agent of change, I am obliged to work with the most disturbing aspects of humanity. Issues related to justice, empowerment, loss of innocence and family history shape my work -- which is steeped in oral tradition and the Spirit.

My art represents an amalgamation of definitions. By design, it is a visual representation of human nature -- thought provoking, beautiful, heartbreaking and a testament of humanity. I make art that encompasses diverse views, experiences and aesthetics. I also make art that encompasses my views, experiences and aesthetics. Although my primary focus involves multimedia installations and documentaries, the joy of being an interdisciplinary artist is the opportunity to experiment and develop through a variety of art forms.

My goal is to create work that encourages the audience to let their emotions, beliefs and experiences venture in (freely or with a little nudging) to activate the art. To feel that art is truly limitless -- if only for a moment.

 

 
 
 
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"Other State," "The Man Project," Mothers & Daughters," and "The Last Taboo" TM and © 2007 Claudette Roper. All rights reserved.