Create & Reflect

Create & Reflect, launched in 2022, invites visual artists to propose an artwork for a vinyl installation on the front street-level window of our community hub at 1476 Fulton Street in Bed-Stuy. The Laundromat Project will commission and showcase the artwork of one artist per year.

2023 Create & Reflect Recipient

Jasmine Hayes

This year, we selected Jazmine Hayes’ work to be displayed at our storefront’s window, and we are excited to share her work with our neighbors and community members! Read on to learn more about Jazmine and her work, “Through Our Hands We Are Guided”, which you can see in-person at The Laundromat Project’s storefront at 1476 Fulton Street in Brooklyn through 2023.

Tell us about yourself and your art practice. 

My name is Jazmine Hayes. I’m originally from East New York but grew up very deeply in Bed-Stuy. I’ve been creating art all of my life, whether it was music or visual art. I think as I get older, my art—or whatever I do creatively—feels more and more like a prayer, whether it’s a prayer to my community, a prayer for myself, or a prayer to my ancestors. I work in a range of mediums. I’ve been doing murals for over 11 years working with nonprofit youth arts organizations across New York City. 

What is the artwork called? 

This piece is titled Through Our Hands We Are Guided

Can you talk a little bit about the hands depicted in the piece? 

There are two times I see hands: the hands of the baby and the hands of the woman. So the two times you see hands, they’re actually an intergenerational interaction, right? Thinking of the elders in the community who have built this community, any craftsman, craftsmanship, or crafts work is done with your hands right down to being anointed in church, down to cooking a meal for someone… that’s all a craft done with your hands. We create with our hands, and I think that is a physical manifestation of a prayer. And so Through Our Hands We Are Guided.

What do you hope that people take away from this piece?

I like to have little secrets and symbols in the piece. So I like for people to walk past it and be like, “Oh, wait, I didn’t notice this part of the piece the other day.” I wanted to speak to them in those ways where it causes them to stop and just be present in that moment. Do you see yourself in this piece? Do you relate to it in any way? Most of all, I want people to take away joy from the piece. It can be a part of their daily walk, and like, “Oh, I’m excited to see this piece when I’m walking by The Laundromat Project on Fulton Street.” 

What do you hope to achieve through this project in the long run? 

I would like for this to grow with The Laundromat Project as an archival project of voice recordings of different people who have lived in Bed-Stuy for a long period of time–Black-owned businesses, old and new, etc… It’s really a historical project for me, documenting our history because our histories often aren’t. I would like people to take away from this artwork that I don’t know where you come from, but I know where you’re going. Honor yourself. Honor your truth. So if you’re from Bed-Stuy–honor that, take that wherever you go. I’m from East New York and Bed-Stuy. So I take that wherever I go. Honor your truth.

Jazmine Hayes is an interdisciplinary artist born, raised and based in Brooklyn, New York. She received an MFA from CUNY Hunter College and a BFA from CUNY Queens College. Her practice explores histories of the African diaspora and the ways they are preserved and reproduced through cultural traditions. Through this exploration, Hayes works across an array of mediums such as installation, painting, drawing, performance, video, sound, textile and writing. Hayes has been featured in Art Forum, Interview Magazine, Artnet, and several other publications. For over 10 years, she has worked with community-based youth organizations across New York City as an educator and muralist with non-profits such as Groundswell Mural, Artistic Noise, and Made in Brownsville. She believes in the accessibility of art resources for the development of Black and Brown youth. She has recently been awarded a U.S. Fulbright for the year of 2022-2023 to travel abroad to Senegal.