I’m Scottish.

I live in Harlem, NYC.

I believe it’s critical and necessary to embrace cultural diversity.

The blending of races and cultures and opposites fascinates me.

I’m passionate about equality.

I’m compelled by the underdog.

The courage of “social outcasts”, who walk their own walk, moves me.

I seek to find that courage and risk, to achieve sincere authenticity.

I work with mixed media to build many layers, creating a history and

opposition, using a multitude of tools to enable me to relinquish control.

I aspire to be at peace with the journey and to fight the urge for approval; knowing there is no right or wrong, just my truth.

I attended St Martin's School of Art in London, where I felt completely out of place, coming from a working class family and walking into a predominantly middle and upper class environment. After a year I transferred to Liverpool School of Art.

 

I avoided my desire to paint, instead focusing on a successful 30 year career that spanned being a textile designer, art director and licensing artist.

 

When I moved to Harlem in 2006, I felt an affinity with the neighborhood and I quickly realized that my white working class upbringing had similarities in culture and feel, but the fact that I can walk out the door wearing my white skin, gives me an immediate privilege that I’m still working on fully understanding.

 

In April 2020, my dad died of COVID-19 in Scotland.  Here in lockdown in NYC, I was lying on my couch grief stricken about my dad while also feeling completely outraged yet impotent about the systemic racism and white supremacist rhetoric gathering momentum in this country.  On one of those days I heard a wee voice inside calling me to hang some paintings I had created in 2019.  On seeing them hanging on the walls, the urge to paint my grief took over, and it’s not stopping.

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© 2020 by Debbie Taylor-Kerman