What do we learn when Black girls have the right to their own pleasures … the right to sit … and be still? Given the ways this world seeks to steal moments of joy and self-satisfaction from Black girls everywhere, what is the power of capturing the moments in which Black girls are allowed to be, to exist? To answer these questions, I reflect upon the act of “sitting” and its use in facilitating moments of interiority for Black girlhood in documentation photography. Mobilizing Tina Campt’s and Kevin Quashie’s notions of quiet to contend with documentary portraits of Black girls by Scheherazade Tillet and Nydia Blas, I meditate on their use of gesture in order to formulate an experimental and conceptual archive of Black girl interiority. This piece considers the act and moment of “sitting” in visual art and what it conveys about the process of subject-making in the lives of Black girls.

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