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The journey of good girls of color

Breathing Lessons

The new exhibition of the Girl Museum is called Breathing Lessons. The artist darlene anita scott explores the journey of good girls of color and how they navigate a role rarely assigned to them in this art and poetry exhibition.

darlene anita scott:

Racism and sexism demonize the very existence of girls of color. These pieces represent some of my own experiences as not just a girl of color, but as a good girl.

A good girl: bright, perhaps a bit of an introvert, perhaps not romantically pursued or interested in the pursuit for these reasons. Of course, these traits are likely not all she is, but when she is told that her brownness negates her goodness, she must determine how to be herself—all of herself—anyway.

Tropism is the biological phenomenon that describes how she does it. In tropism, external agents determine the direction of an organism’s growth. For better or worse, it is often external agents that show a good girl of color how to grow into herself; they determine what she will look like and how she will act.

These collages show the good girl of color in various stages and states of that performance. Her behavior is necessarily organic since her identity is mostly erased and she must shape it on her own.