This photo was selected for The David Brower Centers Juried exhibition, May 28 – September 10, 2015. Please join me and other winning Security Question artists for an evening wine reception at the Brower Center’s Hazel Wolf Gallery. Make sure to RSVP at the link below. I hope to see some of you there, May 28, 2015 – 6:30 – 8:30 pm
Be it Burma or Berkeley, toy guns produce a culture of violence, where ethnic violence is the norm instead of the rarity. On a trip to Burma in February 2014, I was struck how a country on the verge of democracy had taken two steps backwards. News of violence between Buddhist and Muslim communities was in the news. I visited a village during a festival when young boys become monks in the hills outside of the old British Hill Station of Kalaw in the Shan State of Burma. I was struck by the fascination with guns, albeit, toy guns, by village kids and soon to be monks. I thought to myself, “If I had that gun in Berkeley I could be shot and killed.”
I witnessed a young child barely able to walk carrying a gun like it was the natural extension of his arm. These images made me pause and ponder what the future of Burma will be like; were they just boy’s being boy’s of much more…? This photo gives us a chance to examine how seemingly cultural norms affect children in villages thousands of miles away and in cities in the San Francisco Bay Area.
Exhibit details – “Our sense of security holds broad implications for our personal lives and political actions—informing decisions from the mundane to the momentous. In an open call for entry, the Brower Center asked Bay Area artists to offer a 21st century perspective on this complex and incredibly significant concept. The result is Security Question, a juried exhibition that embraces an expansive definition, exploring contemporary military and police issues while widening the debate to include environmental, social, and economic concerns. At times dark, humorous, and hopeful, the featured artworks investigate our national and local defense systems and explore whether security might also be found in our connections to each other and the natural world.”