This work was inspired by the extraordinary migration of Monarch butterflies and the parallels it draws to human migration. Once free-spirited and solitary, individuals gather on a certain day in two’s and three’s and in ever increasing numbers. Strangers, now companions, they travel together over a vast distance to escape certain death. Their only goal is survival and to bring the next generation forward. Entire generations die during this long migration but the will to reach a destination is borne by the next generations. Once arrived, tattered and weary Monarchs cluster together in the canopy of sheltering trees. “Our Hearts Beat As One” represents the shared desire of migrants for survival and regeneration. The paper umbrella represents a fragile shelter, a destination reached, though not as secure as expected. The inside spokes provide a narrow perch where the travelers cluster to stay warm. The fallen leaves beneath the umbrella offer both sustenance and a burial ground. The wings falling from the umbrella convey tears at the fleetingness of life. This is an ongoing project started in 2015.
Beyond Borders: Stories of im/Migration exhibition, Santa Clara University Edward M Dowd Art & Art History Building (2018)
cover art for departures, An Introduction to Critical Refugee Studies (2022)
crossing to safety exhibition, abrams claghorn gallery, berkeley, ca (2016)