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The University of Arizona Museum of Art and Archive of Visual Arts

Rozeal

Rozeal, divine selektah...big up [after yoshitoshi's moon of the filial son], 2006

Rozeal (American, b. 1966)
divine selektah…big up [after yoshitoshi’s moon of the filial son] 2006
Acrylic and gold leaf on panel
Museum Purchase with funds provided by Robert J. Greenberg
2006.005.001

Rozeal’s work is concerned with stylistic appropriation of African-American cultural forms, especially Japan’s ganguro phenomenon where teens adopted extreme fake tans, cornrows, afros, and the high-bling sartorial markers of American hip hop culture. Rozeal recalls, “I felt stung. They were imitating me – a black person – in a way that was neither flattering nor historically sensitive.”

Using the composition from a woodblock print by the artist Yoshitoshi, ultimately Rozeal’s work asks viewers to consider apprehension, ownership, authenticity, and identity amidst the connectivity and distortions of globalization.