When I took this picture, I had no idea if it would come out or not. I just had to try to capture the vision I witnessed on the continent with the highest concentration of African people outside of Africa.
I saw so many other things that I cannot even recount to you, it really made me understand and forgive my own idiosincracies being an African in America. It is much harder to maintain your identity on this continent than on any other on the planet. I have recently (since last November) stopped perming my hair, but I have yet to feel as comfortable as I would like with my natural self. I actually had a dream last night where I found this almost magic potion, in the house of an African me and my family freed from bondage, that made the tight curl of my hair, a looser, more "mixed" version of itself. In my dream, I was wonderfully surprised, but on a mission to find some facsimile of this potion on the shelves of a grocery store but was unable to much to my chagrin.
Being a Black woman on these shores, where beauty is determined by the larger culture (although changing s l o w l y), is very difficult to navigate without compromise of one's self. In Brazil, the young people at the Steve Biko Institute reaffirmed my belief that Black people are the world's most under-estimated asset, we will excel being who we are no matter what and look beautiful doing so.
The Brazilian Sunset