Explore Fiber is a collaborative website showcasing and exploring fiber as a fine art material.
Sonya Clark reminds us that our hair fibers are not only an important part of our identity, but also a creative medium for individual expression with her work from Hair Craft. Inspired by a reviewer’s comment that “hairdressing is the primordial fiber art”, Clark began the Hair Craft Project with those words in mind.
Hairdressers are my heroes. The poetry and politics of Black hair care specialists are central to my work as an artist and educator. Rooted in a rich legacy, their hands embody an ability to map a head with a comb and manipulate the fiber we grow into complex form. These artists have mastered a craft impossible for me to take for granted.
“Clark’s authentic obsession springs in part from the potent, multisensory memories of having her hair combed and braided as a child”
Director, Anderson Gallery
I was born in Washington, DC to a psychiatrist from Trinidad and a nurse from Jamaica. I gained an appreciation for craft and the value of the handmade primarily from my maternal grandmother who was a professional tailor. Many of my family members taught me the value of a well-told story and so it is that I value the stories held in objects.
You can see more of her beautiful and powerful work in her website gallery.