In the portrait 'First things first. I am black.' you see a man in four different forms in which he represents himself. It’s not the forms of self-representation that are being noticed, but his skin color. Because he is self-aware of the things he cannot alter, he stops taking them into account and that allows him to just be proud of them.
Kenneth drew inspiration for this work from personal experiences: " What has always stuck with me is when I enter a room, the first thing people look at is my skin color. Of course that's the first thing that stands out, but I haven't always been aware of it myself and haven’t felt that it mattered. As I have grown older I became aware of how this plays a big role in a person's life. When I looked at the work myself, I immediately saw the title. When a person of African descent introduces themselves on the phone with a perfect Dutch accent and an African name it clears out the so-called 'elephant in the room'. Yes I am black. So let's get out of the way. When the word is out, there’s no need to be shocked by my skin color when meeting in person. These expectations are an unfortunate thing, but it’s yet another annoyance you have to cross in life."
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