Tell us a bit more about your Noises in the Blood project.
I produced the series in a very short time and now need to revisit Birmingham and finish it. I think it needs something else, maybe it needs to tell you that this is not Jamaica or anywhere tropical, but in fact England. The initial motivation was to shake some ideas that are supposedly “overcome” in modern Western pseudo-privilege society, but are not at all. These ideas – feminism, racism, religion, and so on, the ones on which we all “agree” – are somehow statements that we do not question, taboos. After being advised to be careful with what I did many times, I firmly decided to ignore the tip and followed the sequinned reflections of a group of splendid women without second thoughts, to really find out what is going on in my reaction towards them and the context around us. I started to go to some parties within Jamaican communities, which were tropical recreations taking place in spaces such as old British social clubs or industrial estates. It is like a local reality inside a cosmopolitan hyper-reality. I see it as very futuristic and completely hidden.
I am also fascinated by dancehall music, people like Spice and Vybz Kartel. Their music initially seemed like something tacky, however when I started to listen, I began to enjoy it. After reading what they were saying, I found out how it can be misunderstood when perceived in a different context. Later, people like Carolyn Cooper or Angela Davis taught me a new history that allow me to see these women and their culture from another perspective. Davis’ book Women, Race and Class provided me with really new ideas about feminism related to race. Carolyn Cooper’s book Noises in the Blood (I borrowed my title from her) analyses the misunderstood vulgarity of the dancehall ritual and its sexual expression among other aspects like lyrics, idiom, rhythm, etc. It is fascinating.