The purpose for creating Bun 3:42 and Precious Metal No. 4

Southern life can be told best through its inclusion of Southern Hip-Hop music and the popular fashions it generates. It is one of the most prolific and celebrated forms of music in the world and leads listeners into sensitive and personal narratives delivered over heavy bass and fast paced beats. Over the past four years I’ve sourced hip-hop songs that tell stories of survival, crime, poverty, gang violence, and decadence.  In my latest exhibition, Souvenir, I created illustrations of gun related homicides that occurred throughout the Charleston area. The drawings appear to illustrate senseless acts of violence by individuals waving guns effortlessly in the face of their victims. But, sitting in the back corner of the exhibition sat a rose-framed sheet of plexi-glass glowing with lyrics from Texas artist Bun B. His lyrics describe disparaging living conditions that often lead to a life of insurmountable challenges and sometimes violence. It is an important narrative to hear and one that is often lost under the more popular themes of guns and money.

An attribute of Hip Hop music that is not lost within mainstream culture is its glittering ornamentation. Gold teeth have become a pop culture trend touching every socioeconomic group. With Precious Metal, I accentuated both the seductive and unapproachable qualities of Gold teeth. The metal becomes a living form, hyperbolized by sharp edges and amorphous compositions.

Bun 3:42 Lyrics (The bible-esque number represents the time at which this verse begins in the song.)

Cause poverty will

push a nigga over

that brink

Over the edge

especially

if you don't know

your ledge

So instead of being

without, I m hustling

Tryin to get through these

ungodly days

Young spectator gazing at the glowing rap verses. March 15th 2015, 94 Spring St. Charleston SC

Young spectator gazing at the glowing rap verses. March 15th 2015, 94 Spring St. Charleston SC

Precious Metal No. 4 2011, Bronze and Plaster

Precious Metal No. 4 2011, Bronze and Plaster