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An ongoing participatory project created by Charlotte Lagarde​ for The Racial Imaginary Institute.

Digital print of photo and text collage, 2018 - ongoing

Featured in Art In America  and Hyperallergic




When I stumbled across a paint color called Colonial White, I was stunned. In France, which has a continuous history of colonization, the word colonial is used to represent that oppression and supremacy. But in the US and especially in New England, the word colonial has become ubiquitous. I wondered how the word colonial could be reduced to an architectural style. But then looking at it again, I thought that the paint chip Colonial White was actually making the reality of America today and its history visible.


In this participatory project, by visually merging the Colonial White paint chip with actual acts, artifacts of colonization, I am hoping to reframe the term colonial in its historical context and definition, and to reflect on how trivializing the word colonial is a way to erase the history of oppression and negate the reality of todays’ structural racism.

Colonial White was included in the exhibit The Racial Imaginary Institute: On Whiteness at The Kitchen, NY (Jun-Aug. 2018)

Great Force curated by Amber Esseiva at the Institute for Contemporary Art in Richmond,VA  (Oct.2019 - Jan. 2020).

Everyone is welcomed to participate. So please, join us!

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