Zanele Muholi | “Massa” & Mina(h), 2008

In my latest project "Massa" and Mina(h) (2008), I turn my own black body into a subject of art. I allow various photographers to capture my image as directed by me. I use performativity to deal with the still racialized issues of female domesticity-black women doing house work for white families. The project is based on the life and story of my mother. I draw on my own memories, and pay tribute to her domesticated role as a (domestic)worker for the same family for 42 years. The series is also meant to acknowledge all domestic workers around the globe who continue to labour with dignity, while often facing physical, financial, and emotional abuses in their place of work. There continues to be little recognition and little protection from the state for the hard labour these women perform to feed and clothe and house their families. - Zanele Muholi