A home elsewhere.
Bela Balog, Kateryna Brovkova, Andrea Carrozzo, Bill Cox, Dédé,
Jiang Feng, Katie Huckson, Mary Kaady, Darcy Melton, Momo PARK
June 17th, 2022 - July 29th, 2022
It is said that after every trip, we are never the same as when we left. We travel to discover new places or a dimension in which we can be in harmony with ourselves and with others.
During this voyage - this process of evolution and rebirth -the only certainty becomes the experiences that each individual accumulates, those that end up guiding us to our next destination. From physical structures to a community of people, we all have different versions of what it means to be “at home.” How do we define “home,” and how do we find it when the odds are against us? It is therefore here that the idea of travel resonates strongly. What things are hidden inside a suitcase? People's dreams, desires, ambitions, emotions?
Emma McMullin, Director of Curatorial Affairs; Rocio Montiel, Chief Curator; Kimberly Fabbri, Senior Curator; Maria Tabet, Senior Curator; Sophie Cloherty, Associate Curator; Tumi Dolamo, Apprentice Curator; Lily Gould, Apprentice Curator
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The roads are connected, but they can also separate. The roads lead to the future, but they also look back on the past. The roads symbolize construction, but they can also be memorable for destruction. The road always leads somewhere, the question is, is there to go somewhere.
Whether it be to Mecca, Bud Guyah, the river Ganges or Jerusalem, the concept of pilgrimage is synonymous with the world’s major religions. The project On pilgrimage will document such a universal sojourn, a 6,500-mile walk across the United States through Europe and the Middle East to Bethlehem. The journey was made of peoples of many faiths – celebrating their strength through their diversity of beliefs. I walked as a core group member of that journey, shooting thousands of photographs along the way to document their travels. Sharing the common belief that the most profound wisdom concerning the making of peace lives in the world’s great faiths and that the concept of pilgrimage as a sacred journey is a universal way to reconnect with this wisdom, the group representing many beliefs walked on a sojourn lasting almost two years. I hope that this material will highlight some of what happens along the way and inspire others to take on other such journeys.
Taken, Replaced includes a series of photographs, digital collages, a video work, and an installation of archival source material. The work reflects on colonial impositions on the land and landscape and how I am implicated as a person of mixed European settler, Métis, and immigrant ancestry. Born in Bawating (referred to in a colonial context as Sault Ste. Marie) and still living here on the shores of two Great Lakes, my ongoing project confronts my complicated relationship to this land. I work with an archive of landscape images I source from discarded national parks photography and travel books (c. 1960-80). My process involves scanning and cataloguing selected images, separating those with figures/animals from vacant landscapes. I then created composite images via digital collage. I consider the way the landscapes have changed and who has been displaced since the photos were taken. As I select images I consider how my process mimics resource extraction. I think about the act of taking (a photo, land, living things, food, water) with and without permission. I think about what’s possible to give back, or if returning something taken is more of a gesture. I began bringing the framed images in my backpack on hikes around various landscapes near my home and re-photographed them. As I did, I thought about whether claiming, framing, and re-presenting these images is a furthering of colonial theft and violence. Or, can I liberate the landscapes in this gesture of removing them from the context of the books, bringing them back into the land?
This project is very meaningful for me. I’m from Ukraine. I'm very proud and happy to be Ukrainian, even despite the painful trials for all Ukrainian people that we are going through now. Currently, I live in Munich, Germany, as a refugee. I was forced to temporarily relocate due to the Russian invasion of Ukraine. This is an absolutely breathtaking experience to lose my home and be a status refugee, instead of a tourist. These artworks are a compilation of the happiest moments from my past life, where I was a traveler, visited over 100 countries, was learning the history and traditions of different cultures, and was inspired by modern vibes.
I LIKE TO CREATE PARALLEL UNIVERSES. WHAT IF...
This series juxtaposes the torn and dirty USian flag with the naked bodies of all genders, races, sexuality, nationality, and cultural backgrounds, critiquing the United States as the dreamland and shelter for people and immigrants. The U.S. was alleged to be the most open and tolerant country but it fails to welcome people from various backgrounds equally. This series aims to document and capture people's bodies, their vulnerability, emotions, and strength through/with the cut USian flag. Moreover, I am interested in the body, not some mainstream beauty. I encourage people all to model nude because I am not interested in censoring any specific body parts. Also, if they are part of the body, they deserve to be seen/there
The first piece is about the government, which has the power, always trying to manipulate normal, small people—though its rules are always inverted and unfavorable, opposite to these normal people. The second piece is about all burned people who leave their countries with the hope to find new opportunities abroad, but always the roots to the mother country keep them attached to their origins.
I’ve been traveling on and off for five years. During that time I’ve lived in a handful of different countries, awash in cultures that were foreign to my own. I spent my time painting, exploring, and searching for a place to call home. It came easily at first, I was ready to set down roots anywhere. Almost like a first crush, willing to change everything about myself to find that connection. Two years ago, in December of 2019, my niece was born, two months early. I had just made a commitment to apply for permanent residency in Italy. In the coming months, Covid made traveling impossible. I was finally able to return to the States and meet her for the first time just before her second birthday. Of course, she is amazing, like every two year old. She showed me why people stay, why they cling to firmly planted roots rather than traveling an ocean away. I have always believed that we have a say in our destiny, while fate plays a role, that family is who we are born into, but we can choose who we want to be. I love my family, but felt that I could choose my home. I have left again, back in Italy, still searching for home. Now torn in a way that I never have been. I have gained an understanding of why so much of my family didn’t want me to leave, as well as an uncertainty in where I’m meant to be. I’m wary of putting down roots in a way that is unfamiliar. These paintings are like totems. Items that ground me in my childhood and my niece's. I may not know where my home is, but I know that we share parts of each other and in that way, a piece of me is always at home.
For me, home is a place where I can take off my clothes and masks and return to my most comfortable, natural self. And it is a space that allows ME to spread all my imagination, a three-dimensional space that opens the way to my own world