In the mist of all the darkness surrounding killings of black men – both in the USA and UK, it’s refreshing to highlight a positive spin on campaigning and challenging our social norms though ‘art activism’… For the black community especially, this visual medium of campaigning couldn’t be more apt to channel our frustrations into making a positive impact… We met with 22yr old emerging artist doing just that. Meet Rhian Spencer!
When we met with recent Camberwell graduate, Rhian Spencer during his Degree show last month, we shared a 30sec video interview teaser on our Facebook page which wrapped up over 1.4K views within weeks! Rhian’s work “Black Faces in Black Spaces” has indeed gained the attention of many, and both the title and images continue to intrigue, challenge and demand change.
Rhian’s introduction to his work “Black Faces in White Spaces”
Filmed and edited by Kai Lutterodt
“My work is about making invisible people visible. Whilst studying at Camberwell College of Arts, my experience was disappointing at the beginning of my studies – I felt very alone. There are a select few who care to be aware of the issues regarding race, identity, sexuality, etc and now those are the individuals I tend to associate myself with.
“In response to this I have been developing a series of portraits called ‘Black Faces in White Spaces’ which is representative of a combination of students and staff from the College. The works are produced with a digital charcoal and pencil pigment and then are later animated to slightly move and blink. These minutiae facial expressions suggest a sense of consciousness of the individual are an important aspect of the works. Each singular portrait has been displayed around the institution in places they tend to engage with day-to-day and as the viewer you then encounter them as you walk through the building.”
Rhian Spencer graduates with a First Class Degree – CONGRATULATIONS!