I looked at the work of Yinka Shonibare as his works explores issues of colonialism, race and class through various media including painting, sculpture, installation art and film. He looks at the construction of identity and mixed interrelationship between Africa and Europe and their own economic and political histories. This is something which I could relate to my work as I am looking at elements of my own culture. Through his work he asks what completes our collective contemporary identity today. he questions the meaning of cultural and national definitions. (Looking at the idea of identity and culture in todays society – what does it mean? Does it matter?)
A key element in his work since 1994 is the use of brightly coloured “african” fabrics that he buys from Brixton Market in London. However he says that the fabrics are not ‘authentically african the way people think’. ‘they prove to have a crossbred cultural background quite of their own’.
(In relation to my own work – using saree material in a different way – paint on or reconstruct?)
I really like Shonibare’s ‘Self Portrait (After Warhol) 1’, it is a unique screen print, digital print and hand painted linen. I like the idea of continuing to work with fabric, trying different things with it – reconstructing what it is. This has given me the idea to screen print a portrait of myself onto fabric and overlay with text, combining with the ‘confessions’ or statements written on (keeping it in Gujarati) in relation to Shirin Neshat.
Looking at Yinka Shonibare I was inspired by his piece ‘Self Portait (After Warhol) 1’ which is a mix of unique screen print, digital print and painted linen. I first create a mock up my own version using the Indian fabric as the background and a edited self portrait using photoshop. I wanted to combine the the confessional element into this and decided to overlay gujarati text onto the portait similar to the style of Shirin Neshat. I originally wanted to screen print this onto the saree fabric but instead I painted it onto the fabric due to the lack of access to screen printing. I was going to write the text on top but I was unsure when it came to doing it so instead I thought that I could overlay the previous piece I had done on top.
After doing this I definitely feel the text piece needs more work – I need to make it extend the pattern using text or perhaps draw the rest of the pattern on?