The Exodus

2009–2010

The Exodus is a part of the Epic series of narra­tive paint­ings, and was conceived after a visit to the Moses Lake Museum and Art Center and subse­quent commu­ni­ca­tion with its director.

Through sequen­tial canvases that are orga­nized like a free-form graphic novel, this 30 foot long, multi-panel instal­la­tion explores emotional connec­tions between historic events and ordi­nary people. Taking the Cuban Missile crisis as the point of depar­ture, Exodus explores notions of patri­o­tism, of loss, and of nostal­gia for a past that disap­peared and a future that never mate­ri­al­ized. It commem­o­rates limi­nal events that slip between fact and fable; the stories of American pilots and cheer­lead­ers, of Cuban refugees and counter revo­lu­tion­ar­ies. A YouTube video narrates my thoughts on the project.

The chro­matic theme of the panels, which all hint at a sun felt but not seen, is inspired by a verse from James Dickey’s poem, “The Hospital Window”:

Each window possesses the sun
As though it burned there on a wick.