Los Angeles-Based Afro-Dominican Artist Creates From The Need For A Safe Space

Meet Uzumaki Cepeda, born Julianna Cepeda, a phenomenal artist who recently made waves at Refinery 29’s 29Rooms. Raised in New York City with her two brothers by her mother after her father was deported, her Mother would eventually move Cepeda and her brothers to Lawrence, Massachusetts, a small city of primarily Dominicans and Puerto Ricans.

Through my art I often engage with memories and desires. My dreams of wanting to relive childhood and to reshape it is partly why I work with everyday objects and transform them. I am from the Bronx in NYC but I’ve moved around a lot in my life. This lack of stability and the reality of living in low-income housing put me in many difficult situations and exposed me to both the beauty and the pain of it all. I make the art I make because it is what has sustained my spirit throughout the years and it brings positivity to my surroundings. I am a woman from the Dominican Republic and this heavily influences my work. From my photography of inner city life to the countrysides of my island, to the set ups I create in my faux fur installations, it’s all rooted in my experiences. I am an artist which means I’m a visual storyteller. The bright bold colors of my work reflecting the innocence of childhood and the loud palette of bodegas and fresh acrylic nails, among other things. I create and express as I piece together who I am within this world, that in the meantime, I am coating in soft faux fur.

Visit her website to see her complete portfolio and support this talented babe.