United Hearts of America
Artists: Richie Morales and Unknown
LOCATION: Madison Museum of Contemporary Art, 231 State Street
PHOTO: Martin Jenich
To paint, I inquire into the present, the memory and history because I am convinced that we can only heal that which we are willing to see.
The present that we know and suffer is impregnated with social fear and privatized violence. This deforming environment permeates all daily actions in this time of consumerist rushes, selfies, social media and virtual solidarities.
I paint with the intensity of a scream to crack open calluses of insensitivity and oblivion, to nail puncture effervescent bubbles of privilege and overconsumption. My paintings come precisely from those forgotten realities, rather those systematically denied, those from which one cannot have the luxury to escape life’s hardships and often feel condemned to live and suffer them.
I paint what I see and feel to make others see and feel, to provoke a sort of stumble that takes us out of our comfort, whatever this might be, and brings us closer as more aware human beings to hopefully not to continue reproducing so much suffering in the world.
(Source: Let’ Talk About It. The art, the artists, and the racial justice movement on Madison’s State Street. American Family Mutual Insurance Institute for Corporate and Social Impact. Sheboygan, Wisconsin, 2020. Page 88)
Abya Yala is the official name of the American continent in the Guna language. Abya Yala is used by many first nations when referring to the Americas.
Abya Yala means “land of the vital blood”.
“Placing foreign names on our villages, our cities, and our continents is equivalent to subjecting our identity to the will of our invaders and their heirs.” – Takir Mamani in the official declarations of first nations’ governing bodies