New York is seldomly thought of when reflecting on the darkside of this nation's past. It is usually seen as the pillar of immigration and the melting pot for the "New World". Which was ideal only for Europeans to come and experience this American dream. Ellis Island and the Statue of Liberty, now landmarks were here to welcome them. Nowhere else in the USA do we have monuments to welcome immigrants, of which I am sure is of no coincidence. New York also has a strong history of slave trading. For her photo series, White Shoes, artist Nona Faustine wanted to call attention to that history and its enduring legacy.
As a time traveler I’m very invested in the past and our future. I see myself, the people who built this city and country as one. They deserve so much recognition for their sacrifice and contributions, something that is still being denied them. There was a force deep inside of me that needed to pay homage to those who played a pivotal role in the early history of this city, and the spaces in which they existed. I wanted to uncover those places where a tangible link to the past exists. Being a documentarian at heart I wanted you to feel and see those spaces, let your mind wonder. What does a Black body look like today in the place where they sold human beings 250 years ago? No other medium but photography and film could do that.
The imagery and message she is spreading is monumental. Take a look at more of this portrait series and Nona Faustine's mission here
What do you think of the White Shoes photo series?