Untitled (Wild Swans)
Untitled (Wild Swans)
paper
8 1/4 in. x 5 1/4 in.
2018

During the summer of 2018, I received a fellowship from the Nagel Institute at Calvin College. This gave me the opportunity to travel to China alongside eleven other North American artists. Here, I spent two weeks studying art and religion in Beijing, Nanjing, and Shanghai. Following our time, we were asked to make works of art in response to the experience.

Wild Swans was published in 1991 and is currently banned in China. The story follows three generations of Chinese women and chronicles the experience of living through the Cultural Revolution. Before leaving for China, I read Wild Swans in order to gain insight into a complex moment in Chinese history.

This piece is meant to question what it means to move through a space with banned content. I removed the cover from the book, turned it around, and hung it on the wall. In doing so, I wanted to understand what it meant to bring the story with me to China while leaving the book back home in Ohio.