Emeka Ikebude's avatar Emeka Ikebude

In ‘Fragments’, I have used hundreds of thousands of individually-dyed toothpicks to create a portrait of a Black human as object of adversity, challenges, and hope. Much of the toothpicks used in this project are recycled materials that have a life of their own - they retain residues of consumption, and the blood and saliva of consumers. As a transnational commodity, the toothpick is embedded with history. Its derivation and processing often have dire consequences for the ecological system and workers. It is then transported to societies where it becomes either a signifier of privileged consumption or systemic incapacitation. In ‘Fragments’, the toothpick is a pointer to Black disinheritance and adversity.

Entry Details
  • Art form: 3-D
  • Depth: 4 inches
  • Medium: Toothpick, natural dyes
  • Width: 52 inches
  • Year created: 2016
  • Height: 70 inches