Deborah Roberts makes collages using photographs, magazine clippings and images from the Internet. She creates a unique visual language evoking African-American womanhood to explore the subjects of beauty, identity and politics. Forcefully confronting the hyper-sexualisation of women, and the media’s privileging of whiteness and youth, her figures often take the form of young African girls whom she presents with strength and power. Her composite figures represent an expanded view of beauty that prioritises marginalised narratives, while fighting discriminatory perceptions of the Black female experience.
In this collage, Roberts emphasizes the changeable nature of identity and its potential to both empower and oppress. Roberts’ style of collage suggests bodily fragmentation, but the composite figures at the forefront of her world also exude imagination and vitality.