BOUSCULANT: A PHOTO DOCUMENTARY ON EMOTIONAL LABOR, CAPITALISM & THE BLACK BODY IN THE AFRICAN HAIR BRAIDING COMMUNITY
A collection of images in a braiding salon in East Harlem. The Pink walls are filled with laminated posters filled with portraits of Black women with different braiding styles. Printed on the posters are the names and numbers of the women who work there and specialize in achieving these types of hairstyles. Putting out there information and names in visible places to contact them whenever. They're ready to bargain original prices with customers and often settle for less, offering their body to produce cheap labor. Some of these women stand or sit outside for a few hours trying to get clients, asking black and brown women on the street "Hair braiding, Ms?"
The African hair braiding industry is known for being fast and efficient. An assembly line of women braiding heads full of hair like clockwork. This documentary project is captured with the intent to bring awareness to the Black body in these spaces and the magic they offer through their hands. The art of hair braiding. Capitalism is constantly exhausting Black bodies, thriving off the gifts our ancestors brought overseas. In the African braiding community, these women are used to providing cheap labor, and often its because they're in a state of survival and by any means necessary. Support your local braiding spot and pay the full price always, even if your cool with your hair lady and get it for the low.
Techniques of emotion work
Cognitive: An attempt to change images, thoughts, memories, so as to change the feelings associated with them
Bodily: Attempt to change somatic or physical symptoms of emotion
Expressive: Attempt to change expressive gestures in service of changing inner feelings