Blanket for Breonna, Deconstructed: Lezley by Ilene Dube
Dimensions: 7 x 10 inches
Artist Statement: These two submissions are deconstructed segments of a Blanket for Breonna I made following the murder of George Floyd in 2020. The original blanket was used as a prop in a video I made for Art Against Racism 2020. The deconstructed segments reflect the putting together and taking apart throughout history, the racial reckonings our society undergoes every generation. The original blanket was made to honor Breonna Taylor, shot to death nine times in the middle of the night by police who used a battering ram to break into her apartment. This happened March 13, the last day many of us did anything before the pandemic lockdown. As many of us relied on home delivery of groceries, perishables came packaged in a quilted foil bag. These plastic bags, ironically, would last far longer than Breonna – though hopefully not as long as her story. Quilted plastic foil has become a fabric of our times. Quilted foil blankets are given to families in detention centers. The original Blanket for Breonna was inspired by the African-American quilting tradition of using upcycled materials. I imagined a shroud that might have blanketed Breonna with some of the great Black women artists of our time: Alma Thomas, Bettye Saar, Lesley Saar, Chakaia Booker, Elizabeth Stroud Scott, Joyce Scott, Rosie Lee Tompkins, Faith Ringgold, Howardena Pindell, Jae Jarrell, Tshabalala Self.
Artist Connection to the theme: Not only did the world change in 2020, but as monuments have been replaced, the artwork that tells our story has changed. I hope to be a small part of this.
Bio: Ilene Dube is an artist, writer, filmmaker and curator. She won the Mercer County Senior Art Show, First Place Mixed Media, in 2021, and Mercer County Purchase Award in 2014. Her artwork has been exhibited at Phillip's Mill, Grounds For Sculpture (student exhibition), Monmouth Museum, the Gallery at Mercer County Community College, Ellarslie Not Quite Open and Salon de Refuses, Arts Council of Princeton, ArtJam, West Windsor Arts Council, Artworks Trenton, Plainsboro Library, Hopewell Bistro, and Northfield Bank, and is in the private collections of Joyce and J. Seward Johnson Jr., Libby Ramage, Heather Barros, the estate of Priscilla Algava, and others. She served as an executive producer for Art Against Racism 2020. Frame: Gold wood frame, tan mat, under glass.
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