Guajanas hailing ashore, anouncing their birth through rebirth...

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1999. Dimensions: 6'.
Bamboo, copper sheeting, peacock feathers

"Guajanas hailing ashore, announcing their death through rebirth..." is informed by many themes and sub themes. The main one is imminent change. I wanted to address the issue of death, rebirth, and hybridity in the literal sense and in the wider cultural one. A saying that comes to mind when I look at my work is "Ontogeny recapitulates phylogeny." The sugar cane plant is the ultimate symbol of hybridity. It is an Asian crop, brought to the Americas by Europeans, and it helped fund the building of American countries. In order to reap the cane, fields must be burnt as soon as they flower in order to avoid the excruciating itch caused by its blade-like leaves. It is both a beautiful and deadly organism in many respects. The flowers of the sugar cane always resembled Spanish galleons to me, and I can only wonder what native Caribbean peoples thought when they saw these ships appear on their horizon. The ships announced the death and transformation of their culture into a new one.

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