Brown Girl in the Art World III

This video is the most recent work in a series titled ‘Brown Girl in the Art World.’ Dating back to 2016, all the works in this series interrogate my experiences within the art world. The video foregrounds recording taken from a presentation the artist delivered at University where she was asked to discuss recent work amongst a group of fifteen students, eleven of whom were white. The artist used the presentation to discuss the pernicious nature of the white gaze, to examine the weight and import of imaging the queer, black, femme body and to highlight the disproportionate labour artists of colour undertake in relation to their/our white counterparts.

Relationship to lesbian identity:
I am fearful of it, watching it spit from the mouths of homophobic family members and peers, the residue of their mucus like acid on my queer baby skin. I water my plants with it. I swim in it as it turns to sweat from intimate moments with soft bodies. I cook my food with it. I challenge it, wondering if it can stretch over everything that we are. I wash my hair with it. I dance with it, with strong arms and a perfect posture. I lace my shoes with it.

Rene Matić (b. 1997, Peterborough) is an artist currently studying and working in London. Her work explores the immeasurable dimensions of Blackness through the lens of her own personal experiences as a queer, Black womxn living in the diaspora. In doing so, Matić aims to expose, combat and question the power relations that pervade the art world and society more widely.

Matić’s current work predominantly explores the Skinhead movement, its founding as a multicultural marriage between West Indian and white working class culture and its subsequent co-option by far right white supremacists. She uses this as a metaphor to examine her own experience of living in the Black British diaspora and also to excavate white jealousy, the continued legacy of colonialism and the fear of a Black planet - all things which find convergence within and upon her mixed race identity.