This painting is inspired by a phrase that most black women will experience at some stage in their life. “ You’re pretty for a black girl”
This is particularly true for black women who choose to straighten their hair or wear weaves. This statement suggests that beauty is based on European standards and therefore by changing our natural selves, we become more acceptable and easier to digest.
Straight hair makes people relax, there is a reason why it’s called a relaxer!
The element of surprise hidden within this loaded statement suggests that black is not beautiful. Therefore, to evoke conversation and challenge these stereotypes I purposely painted her with white skin and European features whilst retaining her blackness through the texture of her hair.