July Hay, 1943, egg tempera, methyl cellulose and oil on Masonite.
Thomas Hart Benton, 1889-1975, American. ?Metropolitan Museum of Art, NY
A delegate has come from a part of Africa in which farming will soon be impossible.
You can tell how far he has come by the number of gourds he set out with. He knew that his journey would be long.
In his country, the water table has dried up. The rains have not come in six years. The sun’s heat is stronger than it was. The winds also. The earth is turning to dust for as far as the eye can see.
The stranger has been delegated by his people to ask for help.
Because his community, many communities, are beginning to break down.
They have watched their animals die. Their elders are dying before their time. Their women are having difficulty suckling their own children.
They are afraid.
They thought that if we could see them in the flesh; if we would sit with them, then we would know that they are humans also.
Who deserve to live the fullest span of a human life. As we do. They are our kin.
Delegate, 2022, glazed ceramic, steel, hardware, twine, rope, grout.
Rose B. Simpson, American born 1983. On view at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, Philadelphia in 2023