What is Imani Arts?
Imani means “faith” in Swahili and, as the seventh principle of Kwanzaa, is considered an essential value in the ongoing struggle for liberation and justice. Within the context of Black history, I see faith as the divine belief that self, family, community, and society can positively transform and exist in alignment with the highest expression of humanity. My parents blessed me with the middle name “Imani” because they wanted me to live my life in accordance with this essential value. As a socially and spiritually conscious artist, I attempt to create work that exists on the vibration of “Imani” by representing the incredible human potential to be resilient, to question, to resist, and to imagine. Thus, this website is meant to be a space to share these visual explorations. By offering a window into my intimate journey as an artist (an identity I have struggled with in my adult life), this website is also an attempt to practice a more personal faith in the power of vulnerability.
Imani Arts is divided into four central sections. "Beyond Simple Equations" is the body of work I completed for my senior thesis project in college between 2006 and 2008. "Collaborations" are painting projects that came out of relationships with other scholars, artists, and activists. "Spirit Series" is work I've created since graduating college, much of which has come from my spiritual journey since 2009. Finally, "Works in Progress" is meant to document my most current paintings and reflections. I invite you to read, look and respond as you wish. Thank you for taking time to engage with my process.