[Status]Quo

Humans connect through universal and individual experiences, and Puerto Ricans have experienced an uncertainty of political and cultural truths. The instability and fractured status penetrate deep into our identity. Most Puerto Ricans, experience a detachment culturally and physically from the United States, regardless of being part of the diaspora or living in the island.

 

For Puerto Ricans, the sea forms an essential element of our history and identity. Therefore, I adopted elements associated with the sea to represent the literal and metaphorical disconnection that exists between our worlds. Usually, a dock serves as something stationary and firm to which boats can be secured, maintaining them from going adrift. Through the juxtaposition of two piers, I create a dialog regarding the colonial status and paradoxical relationship between Puerto Rico and the United States.

 

The contradiction between the two docks is analogous to the status between two countries which does not seem to find a resolution from the status quo.  Similarly, the narrow and vertical photograph of the sea serves to heighten the physical and metaphorical void between our worlds, and the incapability to reach or distance ourselves from our reality. Ironically, Donald Trump, afterward Hurricane María, used the distance from our countries to excuse the lack of aid provided by his administration. As he said: “This is an island surrounded by water, big water, ocean water.”

 

I attempt to represent visually the repeating dialog of fictional liberty, dependence, statehood, and how our truth gets distorted as a result of the uncertain status. By looking at this work, I invite the viewer to wonder about interdependences and uncertainty of change.