What does it mean to belong to the land? And what happens when your notion of home is a perpetual journey to the new unknown?
As an artist, I am deeply moved by the current exodus of displaced people happening around the world. Transitory Permanence sheds light on the human stories behind the statistics and acknowledges the path of the displaced toward a new culture, which often feels like a surreal and uncanny permanence. The purpose of my exhibit is to show the human side of statistics and bring to light these complex and nuanced experiences through my artwork. As viewers walk through the space, I want them to feel like they are witnesses to the journeys of these individuals, and to think about them on a personal level rather than just as numbers on a page.
My work explores the journey of the displaced from country to country. A continuous transition that fragments the identity, leaving individuals feeling like they exist in two different worlds without belonging to either. Even after arriving at their destination, their journey never truly ends, and it can often result in a traumatic event leading to a mental state of instability. Through the eyes of the newcomer, the new world becomes an unknown and unpredictable landscape where everything is novel and out of their control. The feet, the boat, and the plane make the difference between life and death in unknown territory. The only solace the displaced has are the memories that they carry with them like personal objects, representative of their now past life.
My work explores the struggle for acceptance of displaced individuals through figurative subject matter within subversive environments. By portraying the subjects as either imposing themselves or blending in with the landscape, I challenge viewers' preconceived notions of cultural archetypes surrounding appearance and behavior. Through the immediacy and directness of applying paint on a surface, reminiscent of the Romantic landscape painting period, I convey the emotion and complexity of the displaced experience. By utilizing printmaking and found objects in my installation, I create a surreal environment that fully immerses the viewer in the landscape and the stories. This references the history of printmaking, particularly its use in political and satirical contexts and its ability to spread a message and make a difference, especially in Latin American history.
As I create, I am acutely aware of the interconnection of colorism, racism, and discrimination that often leads to the depersonalization of the displaced. By challenging cultural archetypes and preconceived notions, I encourage viewers to see them not as "others," but as fellow human beings who are struggling to find their place in the world.