Sunday, March 8, 2015

The Gallery of Conscience

Eric and I have designated Tuesday as our day to visit museums in the Santa Fe. Last Tuesday we spent several hours visiting the Museum of International Folk Art.

The Gallery of Conscience at the museum is an experimental space where the public may participate through interactive elements and facilitated dialogues. The current exhibition is called, "Between Two Worlds:  Folk Artists Reflect on the Immigrant Experience".  Folk artists from three continents, through their fiber arts, paintings, carvings and works on paper, tell stories about immigrants' challenges of traveling and transitioning to a new home.

I found one tableau in the gallery particular moving. It was a scene entitled "Fiesta on the Border" created by a Santa Fe artist Luis Tapia showing a home where a young immigrant woman was serving a wealthy man and woman.  Her male employer has his hand on a gate that was closed to the rest of the servant's family. The gate is the symbolic border crossing, "regardless of what nations or people that border separates."

"We’re the immigrants who stowed away on ships to reach these shores, the huddled masses yearning to breathe free – Holocaust survivors, Soviet defectors, the Lost Boys of Sudan.  We are the hopeful strivers who cross the Rio Grande because they want their kids to know a better life.  That’s how we came to be."  President Obama in his Selma Speech on March 7, 2015.

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