Artist: Jake Hamade
Creative collaborator: Shanlee Potts
I do not speak upon the behalf of women or aim to silence them in favour of my own voice; I’m hoping to use my own white male privilege to send out a message – particularly to white men whom wouldn’t listen to those who fall out of the category of cis white males.
Exotify (v) –To treat difference and otherwise: ethically, without presumption; unethically, with prejudice; and in some cases, for better or wise, with desirous intentions. To exotify is to aestheticize or sexualize difference, racial or otherwise, for sexual or nonsexual purposes.
– Ragna Rök Jóns Bluestocking Magazine 31 Aug. 2013
This piece itself stems from a digital art piece I did back in 2014, essentially this work is an oil rendition of that original image. As to the message of the piece, I wanted to portray exotification or objectification of Women of Colour. In this piece, I used the hook puncturing the woman’s lip to represent a man’s grasp on her – in turn also harming her – much like how a fisherman catches and kills a fish to consume in his own benefit. By hooking the woman’s lip, it represents how she is seen as nothing more than an exotic fish for game – debasing her to nothing more than her own ethnicity. To emphasize this, I chose to display the woman in greyscale while the hook and line are in colour. The colour red – also symbolizing the harm caused be exotification shows how the men fetishizing her only care about casting their lines rather than what is attached to the ends of them. I drew initial inspiration for this topic from how ethnic women in pornography are categorized based upon race, with categories such as Ebony, Asian, Latina, while the white women are seen as the default. I also drew inspiration from the concept of Yellow Fever – which is when white men prey on Asian women on the basis of racial stereotypes such as “Asian women are submissive.”