In her artist statement, Amy Sherald explains that her cultural art explores how a "performing aspect of [her] identity was cultivated from the beginning of [her] schooling. [She] learned this was the key to [her] social acceptance and assimilation."
The act of performing culture in order to fit in can often be where someone's social and personal differences stand out the most as it is a constant exercise in clashing with an identity that doesn't quite fit right. Sherald expresses her knowledge of how identity is a formulated construction that she discovered through experiences in her early childhood as an African American female brought up in the deep south.
Her cultural art is a lively collection of vibrant portraits that use vivid colors and careful planning of costume to depict character.