Refuge #1 from the Home Series (2020)
wood, glass, silk, led light, photo transfer, gold leaf, paint, thread, paper, beads, copper wire
26 x 15 x 18 in. (excluding stand)
“A nest is a precarious thing, yet it sets us to daydreaming about security.” -Gaston Bachelard
In the midst of the pandemic, I think of home and what that means to me and others. I think of immigrants in detention centers, elders in nursing homes, large families in inadequate housing, refugees and the homeless. I especially worry about the elderly homeless man I see at the convenience mart. I worry about people I don’t know and people I love.
For my piece, “Refuge”, I honor the first responders in my family. It is a diverse group: a VA ICU Covid Unit nurse, a phlebotomist, a medical assistant, a fire captain, two nurses at U of A Medical Center and an oncology nurse. It is the story of the people they love: children, partners and spouses. They travel between the world of Covid 19 and home. They shared their fears, hopes and love as they return daily in search of the sanctity and respite that home means to them.
I have pictured them with the loved ones they seek to protect. I offer my thanks and respect to them and all of the essential workers who are keeping the world turning.
© Cheryl Thomas