Anya Paintsil

b. 1991, United Kingdom, Wales

Thirty six inch six thirteen, 2019
Punch needled acrylic, wool, cotton and kanekalon hair on hessian

Image courtesy Ed Cross Gallery, United Kingdom, & the artist
Paintsil is a Welsh and Ghanaian artist working primarily with textiles. From rug hooking to embroidery, her assemblages evoke tactile tapestry on the one hand, and constitute semi-sculptural interventions on the other. She frequently uses weaves, braids and other hair pieces (as well as her own hair). 

‘I make a lot of work about race and racialised experiences outside of major cities. In my case, that's being a Welsh person who is mixed race, or is often racialised as black. I go through a lot of human hair, a lot of braiding hair, a lot of extension hair, and create a lot of waste […] All of the synthetic hair in my work has, at one time been on my head, in a hair style,” says Paintsil (Plinth, 10 August, 2020).