Several weeks ago, as I watched the horrific, Neo-Nazi march and subsequent violence unfold in Charlottesville, Virginia, I was overcome with the shameful truth that I have been living in a bubble of comfort that shielded me from truly recognizing the horrible degree of racism in this country. An image flashed in my mind and I quickly sketched it on paper.
Later, I received a text from a friend who is sadly, all too familiar with racism. She said, "people in general need to get out of our bubbles and pay attention to others". Unbeknownst to each of us, we had been thinking the same thing, but from very different perspectives. I knew I needed to put my sketch on canvas. I also knew I couldn't paint it until I examined my own bubble of comfort. I have a long way to go and so much more to learn, but after a time of honest soul searching, asking questions (probably insensitively... thank you patient friends) , listening and stretching myself beyond my comfort zone, I began to paint.
After it was finished, I woke to the words "Bits and Pieces" echoing in my mind. I found my title, a shout out to the shattered pieces of comfort left behind when we begin to break free from that which shields us from the hurt and pain of our neighbors. The beauty of it is, when we do, the world will become a much bigger, brighter, beautiful place.
The sale of Bits and Pieces and Giclee Prints will benefit the Southern Poverty Law Center. You can find more information on this painting and others here.