This year has been significantly different from others. The pandemic swept the nation and overseas. During this time, I decided to focus more on my craft to strengthen the series of works and study other artists and their work; Kerry James Marshall, David Salle, Lauren Halsey, and Edouard Manet to name a few. I knew I missed showcasing work, but I also understood the gravity of Covid-19 as well as its impact on the people around me.
In July, my good friend Shaka Baka, curator and owner of The HoodLove Company, invited me to showcase work during his Pop Up in Leimert Park. I packed up four pieces and joined him for his very first Pop-Up which was very exciting to see and to be apart of that growth, I felt honored. This was the first time I exhibited in-person since the pandemic began.
The people that came extended appreciation for The HoodLove Company- genuine acquisitions, hugs, congratulations, and encouragement filled the space. I would say his Pop-Up was successful as many of the items sold out and people inquired when items would be back and available for purchase. The brand is a conceptual representation of the people that came to support- it attests to the familiarity of love that exists within the 'hood' and perhaps rebels against imposed stereotypes and narratives that exist to to fix us. The HoodLove Company is a reflection of its people that guilds positivity, strength, and love.