Donna Duke, (1998)
Donna Duke (b.1998) in Houston, Texas, is a self-taught artist pursuing her Masters in Art and Cultural Enterprise at the University of the Arts London, Central Saint Martins. While studying art history, Duke was influenced by the likes of surrealist painter Frida Khalo, a Mexican artist best known for her brilliantly colored self-portraits. Her focus on cubism and surrealism informs and redefines her contemporary accounts of the black experience while weaving a personal narrative within each piece. Inspired by people around her, Donna Duke’s work is a contemplative study of the unknown possibilities of walking into new scenarios, situations, and territories in the exploration phase in the life of a young woman. The use of materials such as motifs of gold and copper leaf in Duke’s work signifies the need for recognition of power, fortitude, and strength in the historical and contemporary context through black female storytelling.