Las Vegas, New Mexico – Aldrena Corder, an American poet, designer and writer, will give an artist talk at New Mexico Highlands as a visiting Ballen Scholar Oct. 25 at 6 p.m.
The university’s Media Arts and Technology Department presents Corder in the McCaffrey Historic Trolley Building at 1120 San Francisco Ave. A reception follows the talk.
“My book, The Little Brown Girl, is a series of essays, personal stories and work that reflect the subject matters of hair, skin, and self-love as a Black woman in America,” Corder said.
In an earlier essay, On Loving Blackness and Black Womanhood, Corder said, “This work explores the struggle to love one’s own blackness, and how doing so is both a personal and sometimes political choice.”
She said her previous work, This Skin I’m In, discusses the history and effects of colorism, and what it means to be judged by one’s own race by the lightness or darkness of skin.
Angela Meron, a media arts and technology professor at Highlands, wrote the Ballen Scholar proposal that brought Corder to the university.
“Aldrena Corder’s time at Highlands is a relevant practice for the university’s students to develop ways to ways to relate and communicate their own experiences as Hispanic, Native American, African-American, and other ethnicities,” Meron said. “We’re very fortunate to have someone of Aldrena’s caliber on our campus. She’s an inspirational designer and writer who is especially passionate about helping young women find their voice.”
Corder is an adjunct design professor at Columbia College in Columbia, South Carolina.
Meron said Corder will share her artistic process with various classes and presentations on campus during the two weeks she is at Highlands.
There will be a public exhibition of the work that Corder and the Highlands students create during her Ballen Scholar visit Nov. 2 at 5 p.m. It is also in the McCaffrey Historic Trolley Building.