Navigating Racial Trauma: Weaving Strength through Emotional Baggage Carts

Despite the growing commitment to fostering racial equity, the daily experiences of women of color show little improvement. The persistence of microaggressions remains a stark reality, echoing the challenges faced before the emergence of the BLM movement. These microaggressions carry significant consequences, fostering stress, anger, frustration, self-doubt, and, ultimately, a sense of powerlessness and invisibility. Within this emotional landscape, my Emotional Baggage Carts emerge as vessels for the weight of racial trauma, offering a transformative act of liberation.

Weaving the Sting:

The act of crafting these carts is a powerful mechanism for weaving the sting of daily microaggressions into a tangible form. As I engage in this creative process, the emotional weight of these incidents is incorporated into the cart. This act of making serves as a cathartic release, offering a means to free myself from the constraints imposed by these triggers.

Liberation through Creation:

In the intricate process of weaving, the emotional baggage is not merely contained; it is transformed into a symbol of strength and resilience. The Emotional Baggage Carts become vessels that encapsulate the stories of microaggressions, allowing me to navigate and confront the emotional toll. Through this creative act, I reclaim a sense of agency and freedom, breaking free from the shackles of stress and self-doubt that accompany these daily challenges.

A Transformative Journey:

Each cart becomes a visual representation of the emotional journey, woven with threads of endurance and empowerment. The transformative nature of this creative endeavor serves as a testament to the strength and resilience inherent in women of color. The Emotional Baggage Carts stand not as burdens but as artifacts of triumph over adversity.

In the pursuit of racial equity, acknowledging the persistent challenges faced by women of color is essential. The Emotional Baggage Carts represent more than vessels for racial trauma; they embody a transformative journey toward resilience and empowerment. As microaggressions persist, these carts become symbols of strength, enabling women of color to weave their narratives of endurance and liberation, reclaiming a sense of agency in the face of adversity.

Art as Catalyst: Part 2

Through my social practice, I strive to create spaces that transcend the conventional boundaries of artistic expression. I mobilize communities, encouraging them to participate in a collective dialogue about the issues that matter. The power of art lies not just in its visual or auditory appeal, but in its ability to challenge preconceptions, question norms, and inspire action.

Art, as a tool for social change, is not confined to grand gestures or monumental installations. It is found in the subtle nuances of everyday life, in the stories of individuals, and in the shared experiences that bind us together. My work seeks to tap into this collective consciousness, fostering connections that serve as a catalyst for change.

Beyond Aisles: Unveiling Profound Narratives Woven in Shopping Carts

In the whirlwind of our daily lives, the depth of meaning carried by ordinary objects often escapes our notice. Amidst the commonplace, the unassuming shopping cart emerges as an unacknowledged heroine, quietly threading its way through the intricate fabric of our societal and cultural tapestry.

The Multifaceted Language of Materials:

Picture the shopping cart not just as a practical carrier of groceries but as a canvas adorned with the threads of our experiences. Crafted from materials that carry layers of metaphorical significance, each cart tells a unique story. The cool, metallic structure might symbolize suburbanism and convenience, yet simultaneously evoke contemplation about homelessness and food insecurity.

As we traverse the aisles of life, our hands establish a tangible connection with the world and the people around us. The materials speak in a silent language, open to interpretation by each observer. The rhythmic clatter of wheels against the floor becomes a beat accompanying us on the journey through life.

Unveiling the Unseen:

Much like a tapestry, the genuine beauty of the shopping cart lies in the unseen threads—intangible elements weaving through our emotions. It becomes a vessel for personal translations, reflecting our unique perspectives. Projecting meanings onto the cart’s textile, tangible and abstract emotions intertwine.

Placing items in the cart becomes a metaphor for life choices. What we choose to keep or discard mirrors the decisions we confront daily. The cart transforms into a tangible representation of our personal narrative, an evolving story told through the products we select and release.

An Invitation to Reflect:

Amidst the chaos, I encourage you to pause and peer more closely within. Engage with the materials, trace the contours of the cart, and reflect on the emotions it stirs within you. Consider your story—what memories do you deposit in the cart, and how does pushing it metaphorically align with navigating the twists and turns of your unique journey?

In the grand tapestry of life, the shopping cart assumes a central role as a silent yet powerful storyteller. Its materials, structure, and the experiences encapsulated within contribute to a narrative that is exclusively yours. So, the next time you find yourself guiding a shopping cart, remember, it’s not just about procuring goods; you are intricately weaving the fabric of your own story.

New Emotional Baggage Cart Commission

I am pleased to announce that the Children’s Museum of Pittsburgh has commissioned a new emotional baggage cart for their collection.


Woebegone: Emotional Baggage Cart

Neon painted recovered shopping cart, waterproof reflective tape and blacklight strip

woven with plastic grocery & newspaper bags, paracord and t-shirt yarn.

42” x 24” x 42”, 63 ½ LBs

I even wrote a poem for the occasion….

Woe Be Gone

Woeful news likes to go viral.

I will not let this despair settle in, like forlorn fog.

I will find something to rejoice.

Convert bad news into cheerful song.

And unshackle this emotional baggage from my spirit.

Woe Be Gone…

Triggered Truth & Transformation

Despite the growing commitment to racial equity, the day-to-day experiences of women of color have not improved. Women of color face similar types and frequencies of microaggressions as they did before the BLM.

The weight of these triggers underpins very real consequences… stress, anger, frustration, self-doubt and ultimately feelings of powerlessness and invisibility. These triggers come with a hefty toll of emotional baggage.

Extensions of rope, wrapped, knotted, woven, and embellished with recycled textiles, zip ties, ribbon and yarn, gingerly invite the audience into off the-wall conversations about the “respectability politics” of black hair.  My Emotional Baggage Carts are vessels for this racial trauma.  The act of making, weaves the sting of daily microaggressions into the cart, freeing me from these constraints.

Join the conversation.

Triggered, Truth & Transformation

Schweinfurth Art Center:

Exhibition Dates: March 25-May 28, 2023

Location: 205 Genesee St. Auburn, NY

Wa Na Wari

Exhibition Dates: April 22,  2023- July 17, 2023

Location: 911 24th Avenue, Seattle WA 

The Lab at Krasl Art Center

Exhibition Dates: July 1, 2023- September 17, 2023   

Location: 707 Lake Blvd, St Joseph, MI

ATA@NOVARTIS Closing Next Week

Great Resignation: Emotional Baggage Cart is being installed in the gallery at Novartis in East Hanover.

Im curious to see what emotional baggage is left behind in my cart by the employees of this the pharmaceutical company…

Exhibition Dates: February 28- March 28

Location: Novartis, One Health Plaza, Building 434 Gallery East Hanover, NJ

Closing Reception:  March 28th 6-9pm


Great Resignation: Emotional Baggage Cart is being installed in the gallery at Novartis in East Hanover.

Im curious to see what emotional baggage is left behind in my cart by the employees of this the pharmaceutical company…

Exhibition Dates: February 28- March 28

Location: Novartis, One Health Plaza, Building 434 Gallery East Hanover, NJ

Opening Reception: February 28th, 12-2pm

Closing Reception:  March 28th 6-9pm