Diana Padron

← Return to Colossal Wait: 2022 Senior Art Exhibition


I was born with my mother’s curls. My hair is a part of my identity. It reminds me of where I come from and represents a shared ancestry with others in my community. When I was young, I, like many, spent a lot of time thinking about how I looked, and my hair was a source of great frustration. I never felt at ease with how my hair looked relative to others’; it had a mind of its own. Wavy, curly, unpredictable, and frizzy—these qualities were not the norm. Now that I am older and more secure, I am proud to be a Mexican woman with curly, beautiful hair, and I make work that celebrates this. 

In my paintings, my hair appears as literal subject matter, but also as metaphor. Incorporating varying levels of abstraction and different takes on portraiture throughout my work, my hair becomes a wild, celebratory rhythm; calming, repetitious waves; complex and beautiful patterns that subtly question society’s Eurocentric beauty standards.

Back to top