GALLERY > Cultural Fluency: Engagements with Contemporary Brooklyn

From Here I Saw What Happened and I Could Not Understand (aka The Obama Skirt Project) is a year-long performance artwork by Aisha Cousins during which she vowed to wear fabrics bearing President Obama’s image every day. The fabrics were collected shortly after Obama’s election in 2008 from Nigeria, Ghana, Mali, South Africa, and Tanzania, where there is a long tradition of depicting the faces of black political leaders on clothing. She wore the Obama fabrics until her friends and neighbors began to see them (and the mind-set they represented) as normal. Cousins documented her experiences by writing a series of performance art scores. The piece expanded into the creation of a group called The Story Skirt Project, whereby participants re-perform Cousins’ work by wearing Obama fabric and documenting their own stories.

"From Here I Saw What Happened and I Could Not Understand (aka The Obama Skirt Project)" by Aisha Cousins
"From Here I Saw What Happened and I Could Not Understand (aka The Obama Skirt Project)" by Aisha Cousins
2013