As a Black American, my Black identity has been at the forefront of how I present myself to the world and my “Blackness” has continuously been the subject for my photographs. There is a large difference in the way the French apprehend identity compared to Americans, and upon my arrival here—my entire sense of self has been shattered by this disparity.
During my time in France, I have gone from calling myself an Afrcan-American to a Black-American and then simply American, an identity marker I never gave myself until now. Defining myself in this way has given me sparks of patriotism — except at the same time, it’s brought erasure to the Blackness that I felt I just began to understand, on top of the erasure that occurs by solely being Black in America.
I connected with a few people who felt similarly about their diasporic identities that invited me into their lives to listen to their stories of Blackness in France. These photographs depict those I interacted with alongside self-portraits that reflect my own process of identity as I learn about the ways my Blackness functions away from America and within a new structure of perception.