Chromogenic Print, frame, 4115 miles, and 18 years
5 inches x 7 inches, dimensions variable
We are given a lot of things in life, some by demand and some by choice. My mother would say that we demand to be born. I demand to live, even of myself. Freedom is hard to bear. I did not choose where, or how, but here I am and here this is: a photograph from 2004, celebrating our naturalization in our little living room, taken by any one of us.
I carried this photograph from Boston to Berlin to Frankfurt, and gave it to a German family member–another child of war who underwent different hardship. This is an homage to our modern heritage, shared among those we don’t know exist: a recontextualization. This leaves the symbolic and metaphoric realm to introduce life and lives lived as an artistic gesture, our existence a thing that unites us more than any amount of blood shared or blood spilt.
Initially, this photo was a reference for myself to the hardships of immigration, as I underwent my own emigration to Germany. I wish I had a better photo of it.