Chung remixes the archival portraits she gathers by adorning them with intricate beadwork that holds ceremonial significance to the Black diaspora. She delicately reframes the photographed women with tropical flowers, leaves, cowrie shells, rhinestones, and gold ink on handmade paper. Through these embellishments, the artist forms a critique to undo the colonial violence of the ethnographer’s camera. Chung homes in on Black feminine collective power and anoints the women, allowing them to stare back and claim the consent likely taken from them by the European photographer.
Chung’s collages have circulated beyond the art world in ways that exceed the ornamental. They have been featured on television: At the 2021 Oscars, Questlove, the ceremony’s musical director, showcased a custom-made laptop case by Chung. In addition, the cover of poet Desiree C. Bailey’s What Noise Against the Cane—a finalist for the 2021 National Book Award for Poetry—features Chung’s collages from this series.