MY LABOR YOUR CULTURE
The awful ache I feel when reminded of the dehumanized treatment of workers and human beings anywhere in the world pushes my art practice. Labor is the starting point, but my interest overlaps both the treatment, and contributions of humans anywhere. My mother’s parents immigrated from Mexico, and worked as farm and cannery workers. This family history shapes many of my ideas and informs my art. My core belief is that in recognizing labor as cultural production there becomes an expanded social space. I use art materials that are grounded with an inherent conceptual content and meaning.
My concentration on marginal workers intersects with issues of race, class, power, immigration and incarceration. The insidious legacy of colonialism with its inherent tendency to judge some people as less than others, has created a class of workers living and working on the margins of society. Often they are doing the work in settings and conditions that nobody else will tolerate. These issues are constant throughout the world. During coronavirus a dubious and remarkable swing has unfolded, placing essential workers in the public eye with greater recognition and acknowledgement for what they contribute. My aim is to overlap regional knowledge with intercontinental and interplanetary knowledge. I study the kinds of adjacent intelligence that accompany food harvests everywhere in the world. Participation with this theme authorizes me to research and learn from workers everywhere. These artworks explore the idea of the ongoing eternal presence of the worker to sustain and promote living.
Recognizing cultural production from the entire human presence shows us how to live more full and inclusive lives.