Ten Lives

Artist: Gil Martinez, RGD
This is a piece I did recently using original want ads looking to buy and sell slaves, and capture fugitives. I am an avid collector of old engravings, and I found several that illustrated each of the clips, including the center image of the piece, from Godey's lady's book, ca. 1845. On the whole, the images seem idyllic, and the piece itself is similar to some 1890's crafts I've seen at auction, but each little image contains an insurmountable amount of violence, in the form of ten lives that were never free to run themselves.

Ten Lives—2010
43 cm x 58 cm
Antique engravings, gold leaf, newspaper clippings (ca. 1780-1840), glass and wood.