Here I am, the artist, the person, the black woman, and the stereotype. I'm using myself and it has nothing to do with my muses or other women. It has to do with me. You see parts of my body moving, very collage like, flashing, and not speaking, just laying on a couch, looking out at the viewer.

— Mickalene Thomas

The most powerful Mickalene Thomas quotes that will activate your desire to change

I think what I have done is claimed the space and pushed it forward as much as I can in relationship to who I am and how I live my life.


Beauty has always been an ​element of discussion for black women, whether or not we were the ones having the conversation​. Out of necessity, black women have always had to consider others' perceptions of a certain beauty ideal, just starting with the skin color.


I knew what I was doing, but I never really considered the magnitude of how my images were transformative to people.


I grew up with a lot of brothers and I don't have any sisters, so for me it's really important to develop my sisterhood. It's something I've always coveted.


Beauty was so heavily important in my family, something I had to contend with.

All those experiences allow me to make what I'm making today. I grew up with that. There's a reason why I express that in my art. I'm trying to figure it out myself.


I got really excited about finding new ways of using video, and the immediacy is different, in a way, than painting and photography. The creativity comes with the editing. You can layer and cut and paste. I really love that it's like another form of making my smaller collages but in video form.


I'm using the grid as formation. I wanted a relationship between the paintings and videos so that way when you are looking at the videos there's a direct relationship to the paintings.

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