"Entre Os Lados"

By Julia Fisher

In “Entre os Lados”, I investigate the particularities of my upbringing as a Texan of Brazilian and British descent. While exploring thoughts of self-identity, and the feeling of disconnect from familial roots due to diaspora, I consider my mother and I’s experience and the lack of a cultural community for us to be part of in Kingwood, Texas. I reflect on the memories I have from visiting my mother’s home (Rio de Janeiro) as a young child, and how my constant need to assimilate into American culture affected the way I experienced Rio as a tourist. My adolescent mind was conflicted between being proud of my ancestry, yet worried about being relatable to my peers. Growing up feeling torn between two cultures led to my curiosity of identity within my Brazilian diaspora.

I explore the tension and tenderness of my memories in Rio, by staging images in front of collaged backdrops. Using archival images, Google maps screenshots, Brazilian food packaging, etc., I pull material to investigate my history and place of belonging. Google maps allowed me to traverse the streets of my family’s community and revisit memories I forgot I even had. While exploring the streets of Iraja, I came across an ice cream stand I remember visiting with my cousin. I was transported back to an exact moment when my cousin peeled the wrapper off and tossed it on the sidewalk. I instantly demanded that she pick up the plastic wrapper. In the present, I realize my American tendency to claim superior ethics. Objectively it is wrong to litter, but who was I to dictate how the land was treated. A land that I question if I even belong to.

I also consider my current version of myself and how these memories and practices exist in my current space. These images exist within the walls of my Houston apartment, filled with plants and items gifted by my mother. My mother’s practices and aesthetics have moved with me and are intertwined within my daily rituals. I utilize passed down recipes and food to avoid complete assimilation, yet acknowledge my discrepancies and inability to fully replicate them. Moving away from suburbia and into a diverse metropolis, the richness of the cultures surrounding me made me feel regretful for my assimilation growing up. I become torn between blaming myself until I remember my adolescent brain did not hold much agency.

As I paste together multiple aspects of my life into visual collages, I map the complexities of my cultural and familial identity. I contemplate the connotations of my youth and how they have transpired in my current state.

Meet Julia Fisher

Julia Fisher is a Houston-based artist who primarily works with photography, digital media, collage, and mixed media. Julia is currently a student at The University of Houston, working towards her BFA in Photography and Digital Media. Throughout her work she is interested in exploring femininity in its intimate expression, giving the viewer an immersive experience through relatable and curated aesthetics. She also pulls from her interest in the complexity of internet culture and the multitude of fads and eras that emerge from it. Personal anecdotes and motifs carry great importance in her work and are spread throughout each series she creates. She utilizes memories to investigate diasporic identity and the “inbetween” felt by first generation Americans
Editorial Staff

Editorial Staff