CuratorSpace Artist Bursary #14: Chanelle Brown

Chanelle Brown is a British-Caribbean multidisciplinary artist, bridging the gap between contemporary art and heritage craft. Her live art demonstrations seek to document cultural legacies whilst uncovering postcolonial retention. Chanelle takes inspiration from her familial histories to facilitate new ways of understanding labour, craft and storytelling.

"My project is a continuation of a woodturning residency which I undertook at  Blackhorse Workshop (East London), which began in June 2021. Thanks to a grant from Foundation for Future London, I was able to attend the six month residency and hone my new craft, inspired by afrofuturistic design and ancient African folklore. 

My work is called 'Bantu', (meaning people in Zulu), and is a collection of hand-turned wooden bowls made from reclaimed timber. My aim was to create a 'nation' of bowls. The felted details (almost hair-like) denote vulnerability, softness and the vibrancy of African-Caribbean culture. These vessels invite you to dine with a regal expression of Blackness. A reclamation of heritage, beauty, prestige and elegance. 

While I enjoyed the residency experience, I was saddened to learn that the industry is very homogenous, with little to no Black Female recognised turners. My ambition therefore is to continue to develop my woodturning skills and 'Bantu' range, while promoting Black Female makers."


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