Week 7 came so quickly, and I am in shock of how many inspiring artists there are to have been able to come across in what it seems-like-so-little- time. This week in class, I was able to stumble upon meeting Dulce Soledad Ibarra, and her exhibit “Manos De Oro” in the Max L. Gatov Gallery East showcases the hardships that her father experienced which often goes unnoticed by people in everyday life. Sometimes life becomes rough as there is not always someone to go around praising us for what we do on a day to the day basis. “Manos De Oro” translates to ‘Golden Hands’ in English.
The exhibit featured many gardening tools which were embroidered with the color ‘gold’. This is to illustrate the burden that “immigrants go through” according to the artist. I can relate on many levels because my parents are immigrants as well. Often doing work for illegal wages, it comes to no surprise that some of our parents toil vigorously to supplement the roofs over our heads, or to keep the food on our table. These tools were very familiar to the artist and thus sufficed as a reason to showcase them. The title of the exhibit represents how everyone’s hands are made of gold and are meant for purpose. Just sometimes, the gold on some’s hands are ‘covered in the greenery of another man’s land.’ It is a powerful message because immigrants labor under desirable conditions to make end’s-meet with bills after bills.
These bags the degree and intensity of the labor done. That amount of grass takes effort to trim and mow, thus displaying the quantitative aspect of working as an immigrant. But, recognizing how much our parents do for us creates a desire to work hard in life to make sure people like myself, a first-generation college student can make it easier for my parents to live a life in America.
Ibarra poses for a picture behind the video on the projector. She smiles because she knows that the love that her father had for her should be enough of a reason to pursue what she loves to do. This exhibit was touching because of the easily-relatable atmosphere in the room. I hope to see more touching exhibits like this one.