For little over a year I have been working the Drop Cloth series off and on. There were times as I finished one piece to the next I thought of the children I worked with over the years and how they fared with all of what life has to offer and how much each of them didn't know. I find it perplexing that when my mother was ill, I had the inspiration of doing this series. She passed on to be with the Lord the beginning of the year, and now after 16 pieces do I believe the series is finished. Its a peculiar number to finish with and the timing as well.
Nevertheless, when looking at the last piece still incomplete, one of the guests where I am employed was introduced to me. She saw my work and I explained what it meant. She had the same reaction as so many others in hearing the portrayal of the series. However, she was the only one that heard why the series is completed. She said,"that's why she looks like this." I thought she was referring to the piece being incomplete. She was referring to the expression of the girl. Deliberately when sketching each piece the children were made to be looking at the viewer so the each person looking back could see what is happening to our next generation. The way we treat material objects is with so concern more so then the very ones that will soon be heads of state and corporations. These children will be in the government making decisions that will be affecting our lives. How wonderful would that be if they learned something about compassion, considering the other person, or love? Instead what they have learned is that is is a dog-eat-dog world and you better get your before someone else snatches it fro you. How do I know? Because a teacher said it to me while I was 1 of 30 in grade school. Did the system get better? Are there better teachers that inspire children to learn? Really? In Detroit, Michigan 60 schools were closed down, boarded up, and some were demolished. No one fought it. When adding more tax to cigarettes, there were those that had petitions, the senators got involved, and it became a ballot to vote on.
The last piece was of a girl with her hands of her face pulling downward. She is a young child dealing with adult problems and having nothing to draw from to resolve the giant of an issue. Who is she going to go to? Who has the answers? Mom and Dad are arguing. The teachers don't have the time. The counselors are focused and one thing and nothing more then that. Where is the help? Where are all of the resources to keep this child whole and healthy. So she looks up. Its what I have been taught as well in those times when there is no one left to hear the gripes and complaints and you realize as an adult, that complaining gets you no where. You look up.
When that last piece is finished, I will link it here.