What Inspires me?
What drives and inspires me as an artist is the beauty I find in the faces of women wherever I travel. As an African-born woman, I am especially fascinated by the amazing creativity and range of Africa’s tribal visual culture. Through body decoration, costume and ritual, people can express so much meaning and life. Features that in Western society wouldn’t be considered “beautiful” are, to me, exciting and daring. We can all be walking art forms. That is why I choose to paint my own face and become different characters. This is how I move past the prejudices and racism of the world to a place of beauty and strength.
Some of my work is permanently installed at the Municipal Tower Gallery in Seattle. I am also represented by the Angela King Gallery in New Orleans and Lovetts Gallery in Tulsa, Oklahoma.
I dedicate my artwork and career name, Aswesi, to the memory of my grandmother, who passed away from a brain aneurysm when I was 15.