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Sonya Dyer (Visual Arts, 2021)5. Message

Sonya Dyer

Finalist in 2021 for Visual Arts

Sonya Dyer places Black women of myth and of science as active progenitors of the future, querying the construction of possible futures by asking in whose image the future is made. Working mainly across sculpture, moving image and text, Dyer explores how subjectivities and alliances are formed across cultures and temporalities.

Hailing Frequencies Open – her ongoing body of work – intersects Star Trek’s Nichelle Nichols’ astronaut recruitment activism, Andromeda the Ethiopian Princess of Greek mythology and the dubious legacy of the ‘immortal’ HeLa cells, taken from the body of Henrietta Lacks. These were the first human materials sent to space, by the Soviet Union in 1960.

Dyer’s work sits at the intersection of speculative fiction and science, creating a world in which this trilogy of influences combine as the genesis of new possibilities for Black female subjectivities within fictional narratives of the future. Dyer has exhibited internationally and was a 2020 UK Associate Artist at the Delfina Foundation, as well as being an alum of Whitney Museum of American Art: Independent Study Program.