Qualeasha Wood

b. 1996, Long Branch, NJ
Lives and works in Detroit, Michigan

2021 Cranbrook Academy of Art; Detriot, MI, Master of Fine Arts in Photography  
2019 Rhode Island School of Design, Providence, RI; Bachelor of Fine Arts in Printmaking

Qualeasha Wood’s work spans sculptural, textile, and digital media and suggests realities around living in the black female body that do and might exist. Wood utilizes a range of traditional craft and contemporary digital materials to create intricate dialogues across time,  and present novel perspectives on the relationship between the avatar and the self.

Wood’s seminal tapestry works find an interplay between digital and analog wherein the painstaking manual work happens on the digital plane. The uncanny self-portraits they harbor are composed throughout hundreds of layers of photoshop, wherein the images are spliced and mix-matched down to the pixel before being sent to a robotic weaver. The AI-powered loom is one of few able to capture the most exquisite details of the final image.

By contrast, she composes the wool and acrylic works tuft-by-tuft, and they depict a less literal self and a more literal interpretation of blackness as an experience. Evocative of MS Paint doodles, Betye Saar’s, “Black Girl’s Window,” DIY Pinterest, and Ebecho Muslimova’s “Fatebe” drawings, these new works feel like the young artist’s most personal field notes on an endlessly disquieting year.

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