Chakaia Booker Creates Complex Assemblages With Rubber Tyres


Born in Newark, New Jersey in 1953; Chakaia Booker began her career with a wearable sculpture in the 1980s, and her early explorations can now be seen in the woven, textile-like qualities of her work presently. She is an American sculptor who explores race, gender, class, and labour with her work. She is best known for creating exquisite assemblages of installation art from recycled rubber tyres and other found objects.

chakaia booker

Chakaia’s work is inspired by a combination of cultural and aesthetic parameters including texture, movement, softness, power and strength. Her work converts simple materials into complex pieces that stimulate the viewer to ponder over the expressive nature of art. 

She always wears a large intricately wrapped hairdress, which has links to her earliest wearable art and has become her fashion signature. Booker began her career making wearable sculpture in the 1980s, and those early explorations can be seen in the woven, textile-like qualities of her current work.

Sculptor Chakaia Booker fuses ecological concerns with explorations of racial and economic difference, globalization, and gender by recycling discarded rubber tyres. Tires suit her style because of their versatility and rich range of historical and cultural associations. She slices, twists, weaves, and rivets the medium i.e. rubber tyres, into radically new forms and textures. 


You might also like to read about Kara Walker: Invoking Themes Of African American Racial Identity


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