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Constance SHERESE
Collier-Mercado
My work primarily focuses on a contrast between the ethereal and the literal. Wings and Angels vs. Still-life’s and Portraits. Building on this template, I've recently begun to expand my portfolio by exploring the surrealist, abstractionist, and layering methods of artists like Kahlo, Pollock, O’Keeffe, and Bearden. My 3D/Immersive artworks use pieces of the Black lived experience combined with various 'wilderness items,' animal figures, references to pop culture, current events, history, etc. to craft a dissonant collage that offers an authentic yet unexpected 'self portrait'. 'Wilderness Items' used include: Carolina Gold White Rice, Quilting Thread, Low-Country Berries, Rocks, Pluff Mud, Tree Foliage, Chicken Bones/Feathers, etc. to describe my Gullah Geechee/Mississippi Delta/West African ancestry. My intent is that the finished products embody a depth of layers referencing, in turns, the themes of: - Black dis/ABILITY culture via my Lupus experience et al.; - Speculation on achieving equilibrium of the Black past/present/future via collage, papier mache, graffiti, hip hop culture, and biological imagery; - Multilingual, text-based iconography & social commentary as High Art via wood-burning, cloth grafting, and fusion with other three dimensional objects.
Author/Writer, Digital Artist, Performing Artist, Photography Artist, Spoken Word / Poetry Artist, Visual Artist

Constance SHERESE Collier-Mercado is a Black Woman Writer/Artist, Founder of The CultSTATUS Arts Haven, and self-professed “Anthropologist of the Arts” in search of all the Culture she can get.

Born and raised in the culturally rich environments of Chicago, IL and the Bronx, NY, respectively; her tools are equal parts pen to paper, paintbrush to canvas, poetry to motion, and protractor to compass.

"Fresh, DOPE, Beauty ..." are the words she uses to describe the pluralistic idea that she can be a Writer, Visual Artist, Dancer, Musician, Scientist, Mathematician, Linguist, Educator, Advocate, and any other genre of Woman/ish Activist necessary to give voice to the fullness of Black Afro-Diasporic existence.

To that end, her writing and visual art primarily focus on examining the nuanced layers found in the multilingual and equivocal - the literal and imagined intersections of sensory, mystic, and social identities - to include the cultures of abuse, empowerment, and dis/ABILITY.

Her poetry has been published in the 2014 Georgia State University Conflict Resolution Magazine and self-published on her WordPress blog, Rabbits In My Mind.

An excerpt from her grief play “Chelsea’s Dream: Embracing Yellow” premiered as a unanimous selection at the 2015 Atlanta Black Theatre Festival and she produced a one-woman spoken word homage to The Last Poets at the 2016 Festival.

Recently included among an inaugural cohort of Writer/Artists invited to attend both the 2016 and upcoming 2017 Home School conferences – she has expanded her outreach to curate an AfroFutures Syllabus event "Hoo-Doula/Voo-Doula" at the Auburn Avenue Research Library in November 2016.

She is currently writing two novels - one in a multilingual Gullah/English creole, the other in Spanish – while metastasizing the reach of her work into allegorical movements (dance) and sounds (music) which depict the divinity and kinetic energy of The Kinfolk.

Her work can be found on her website(s) at www.cSArtsHaven.com and www.ConstanceSHERESE.com

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