Evidence of Humanity

My post this week is inspired by Ana Mendieta.

I did not draw this leaf. I considered marking the wall of the pub, as many do, but I felt uncomfortable doing so. Thinking about why I might feel uncomfortable doing this, I realized I did not want a part of me on the wall for anyone who goes to the pub to see. So, though a photograph of my own graffiti might have been more meaningful somehow, that this leaf is not mine shows how one’s artwork is an extension of themselves. I was not willing to draw on the wall because I was not willing to make myself vulnerable to the eyes of Vanderbilt.

But more about the photograph.

With this photograph, I opted to enhance the redness of the bricks. This is partially in tribute to the red color of Mendieta’s Vs. Also, the enhanced red mimics the aesthetic of human blood. This effect is meant to emphasize that this wall is marked by people. The blood color is not meant to evoke human death, but human life – blood is what fuels life and it is seen on these walls. Much like Mendieta’s photos of the mark her body makes on the earth, a person is not seen interacting with the wall in the photograph. However, we know someone has been there because of the marking he/she has left behind. This photo captures evidence of humanity, though it is not explicitly seen.

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