© 2019 by Brett Kaufman 

NINA SIMONE

 
2011
Assemblage: 27" x 25.5"

Photographic Editions: Archival Ink on Cotton Rag

It was Sandra Berhard, in her '89 performance of 'Without You I'm Nothing', who first introduced me to the music of Nina Simone. Investigating further and purchasing my first Nina Simone record, I'll never forget the first time I heard 'A New Day', it sent chills through me. Before long, I became an avid listener, and came to appreciate more and more, her genius as a gifted pianist. Upon reading 'Princess Noire:TheTumultuous Reign of Nina Simone' by Nadine Cohodas, I was fascinated by the fact that this once poor child from North Carolina, ended up studying at New York City's prestigeous Juilliard School of Music; no small feat for a woman of color in the early 50's. My original assemblage juxtaposes a repeated image of Nina in her humble beginnings, with that of the piano keyboard, an instrument that eventually brought her talents to the masses and helped launch her into the the civil rights movement in the 60's and 70's.