D’Angelo Lovell Williams (b. 1992) was born and raised in Jackson, MS. Williams holds a B.F.A. in Photography from Memphis College of Art. He received an MFA in Art Photography from Syracuse University. His work has been featured in Dazed, W Magazine, The New York Times, Out Magazine, Hiskind, Musee Magazine, Newspaper Magazine, and Strange Fire Collective. D’Angelo has exhibited at Higher Pictures, The Mint Museum, Yale University Art Gallery, The Pingyao International Photography Festival in Pingyao, China, Black Box Gallery and The Center for Fine Art Photography. He has attended the Skowhegan Artist Residency at the Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture and received an honorable mention, from Stanley Wolukau Wanambwa, in The Trouble With Flesh, work by Syracuse University MFA in Art Photography Candidates. Williams is based in New York City.
My work is about desire. I’m challenging the systemic placement in society and the framing of the Black male body by using my own. I photograph myself because I am not thin or white and my lived experience is not a heterosexual one. Black men, other than myself, appear throughout the work as sitters, lovers, helpers, or even shadows. Themes and issues of race, class, sexuality, gender, love, and intimacy fuel my image making. My images speak to my audience through performance, gaze, experience, imagination, power, and vulnerability. Masculinity, femininity, and sexuality are all performances. Being in control of how I show myself gives me power over my own body. It is a tool I use to empower and resist.
To make history I have the privilege to create, inspire, and challenge the world we live in. Agitating comfortability and implementing notions and nuances of Black and queer perspectives is one of my goals. I critique the, predominantly, straight history of art and the systemic oppression of Black bodies. I want to continue to share my work on various platforms and social levels to reveal and control the narrative. Accessibility to my work is important to me. I want young Black and gay kids in the South, and everywhere else, who fear for their lives growing up, to see my work. I want the beauty of my work to trigger ideas about the deeper issues of life. I look to my own Black and gay experience and the experiences of others to make the invisible visible. Topics about domesticity, love, stigmas around sex, white supremacy, police brutality need to continue to inspire the communities affected.
To view more of D’Angelo Lovell Williams’s work please visit his website.