by: Soyoung L Kim
The four abstract works in this series explores the question, “Where are you from?” It is a question I have been asked too frequently in my life, and it is a question that is resurfacing now in our country during this Coronavirus pandemic. It is a question I’ve been wrestling with during my quarantine, wrestling with the feelings that come up for me.
“Where are you from?” This is just the bud of something deeply ingrained. “Where are you from? You don’t belong here, you have no right to be here, but I belong here, I have a right to be here and to question your roots, your Americanness.”
“Where are you from?” But I’m turning the question around and I’m asking my questioner, “Where are you from? Do you know what America really is? Do you know who helped make America what it is?” Before you question my roots, understand how POC bodies have contributed to the making of our home.
It’s spring and from my windows, I see trees sprouting tender green buds or exploding with pink blooms. These are contrasted against gray rooftops, gray cement. I am looking for hope. Hope in solidarity with other POC, hope in the future. Trees seem to understand how diversity gives strength and survival. Look at any forest – we find a diversity of plants and trees that all contribute to the health of the ecosystem. Can we humans understand this too?
Forever Foreigner, Nos.1, 2, 3, 4
Mixed media on paper
22.25 x 15 inches
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