Originally created as part of the Friends Peace and Sanctuary project (more below) and included in my artist’s book A Threnody for the Dispossessed. This image draws on the testimony of Central American refugee Leticia Ramos- “…I lost my little boy, but he survived. I had given him up for dead, but thanks be to God, he took refuge in the hills and was lost for 40 days… a man found him. He didn’t even look like a human being, he was skin and bones. He ate guayabos (a fruit) and something called “postas” (an insect). That’s all. He said when he climbed a tree he felt unable to climb back down again, because he was so weak from not eating… He wore only a shirt, because he ripped his pants from walking so much among the briars. He was determined that if he had to die, he would die in the hills, but he wasn’t going to let the soldiers kill him.”
..he just turned 10…”
About Friends Peace and Sanctuary– “Swarthmore College’s Friends, Peace, and Sanctuary project, supported by The Pew Center for Arts & Heritage, brings renowned book artists into conversation with Syrian and Iraqi individuals who have resettled to Philadelphia. Driven by questions about displacement and refuge, history and experience, the project explores art’s capacity to build empathy and create a deeper sense of belonging. The project resulted in exhibitions in 2019 at Swarthmore College in the spring, three locations in Philadelphia throughout the summer, and Brooklyn, NY in the fall.”
A Threnody for the Dispossessed is available via Booklyn here.