In this series, Aqueene Wilson, a Caribbean photographer based in the Netherlands, explores a new aesthetic of Blackness by envisioning the representative wholeness of Black women. The artist deliberately addresses the tendency to overlook the individuality of Black women, acknowledging their distinct identities while embracing formative factors like sisterhood, lineage, culture, and community. Seeking to challenge the notion that Blackness is homogenous, the works within this collection serve as a holistic love letter infused with undertones of visual activism.
By presenting fresh perspectives on the medium of photography and exploring the concepts of race, age, and gender, the collection portrays intimate moments of leisure, rest, solitude, care, and play. “SELFHOOD” holds space for dialogues and initiates discussions on the roles that Black women take on or are allowed to assume. This body of work raises the fundamental question of when and how Black women get to be recognized as fully human. Aqueene proposes rest as the answer, suggesting that only through rest can individuals breathe, dream, and care for themselves. Ultimately, rest is portrayed as a revolutionary act of freedom, a place of no negotiation.