Daughter of the Sun is a very personal piece for me. As a woman living with fibroids, I have researched the overwhelming statistics on the complications fibroids can create for Black women, not only in the childrearing years but also through the pain and heavy bleeding that plagues us into menopause. I created Daughter of the Sun as a pilot project for my research.
One of the theories I have encountered is that, as African-Canadians, our ancestors came from America and survived for centuries eating the cast-off parts of animals, which were salted for curing and preservation. Our “slave diets” have created health issues for both Black men and women.
In creating Daughter of the Sun, I wanted to imagine my bulky womb. I used red clay to form the womb and the conceptual fibroids. The small bust is a portrait of a woman, but it also represents me. The pieces were fired separately and assembled later. The wooden flowers and dried leaves were added at the end of the process to represent how I feel about living with fibroids.
This topic is important to me because the main treatment for fibroids is usually a hysterectomy or treatment that stops the period for intervals of time. I have discussed fibroids and the discomfort they create for me with my gynaecologists. My decision to forgo any treatment is a decision I can live with. The heavy bleeding is cumbersome and there have been some embarrassing situations. However I would only go under the knife if the fibroids became cancerous. So I will continue living with fibroids and continue to conceptualize how these foreign growths exist within me.