My work centers on integration with the so-called 'other.' For example, in the American Nightmare series, I combine ICE agents with children crossing the Mexican border. Born under the Communist regime, I question power, especially of a seemingly 'given' hierarchy.
In the most recent projects, Corona Reset and Touchstone, I question my hierarchical framework. What is my focus for the day, and why is the subject matter important? It is an every day painting process since lockdown, images from the studio, from the morning headlines, breakfast. Politics inextricably intertwine.
In Touchstone, part of The Immigrant Artist Biennial, I engage the community and ask those affected by Covid to email me photos of loved ones they need to hold, either in grief or while in the hospital. In an era in which hundreds of thousands of people are dying, Touchstone reconsiders the death and mourning processes. Daily news tolls the numbers, which represent something unimaginable. To make the loss tangible and bring Covid's death' home,' I ask participants to share in the grieving captured by these works, even as we distance physically. For me, the intimacy of painting flips distancing. Of course, surviving Covid in the US may be far easier than surviving the police and systemic racism: As a collective grieving, I also paint those that have been massacred at the hands of the police and migrants that remain unnamed.