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Artist explores the duality of the human being and sets his sights on immigrants

A score of Mark Strickland’s paintings that are exhibited in a museum of the California State University San Bernardino explores the duality of the human being, taking as a starting point the environment that surrounds it and that includes the homeless and immigrants.

The exhibition “All too human: The art of Mark Strickland”, which is exhibited since Friday in The Robert and Frances Fullerton Museum of Art (RAFFMA) of that university highlights both the failures of the human being and the resistance of his spirit , according to a statement from the institution.

“Human beings have a duality, on the one hand they are angelic and on the other diabolical, but education guides them to make a decision,” Strickland, 69, who was a professor at the Pasadena Center for Art and Design, told Efe. in California, for 34 years.

The exhibition, which will remain until May 19, also includes two sculptures, such as “The sacrifice of the grandfather”, made in oxidized bronze, and “Salto de fe”, in polished bronze and portraying a young woman naked in homage to undocumented youth benefited with Deferred Action, known as “dreamers”.

“Works of art have a voice to educate and move people,” Strickland said.

“The only way we can awaken awareness of the extremely unfair that happens with immigrants is through education,” added the plastic artist, graduate in Psychology and with a master’s degree in Art and Psychology.

Strickland pointed out that in the US the only people who do not come from immigrant families are “Native Americans” and criticized the current tension towards immigrants that comes from people “whose ancestors were also immigrants” from Europe.

That complaint is reflected in some of his oil paintings, whose titles give clues to the views of the artist: “Hands in supplication”, “The decision”, “Creating conscience”, “Humanity in crisis”, “Resurrection of freedom “, among others.

Photograph of September 26, 2017, of the sculptor and painter Mark Strickland who poses next to his plaster statue “Mater Dolorosa” (head of the Statue of Liberty), in his studio in Sierra Madre, California (USA) . EFE

“I want people, after seeing my works, to leave the room to ask themselves: Do we want to continue being anesthetized to this suffering or do we want to be people with compassion?” Said Strickland, who has about 40 years of artistic career.

“Latinos are the warmest, most cheerful and hardworking people with whom I have interacted and with the works I want the American people to feel that all the fear caused by the political system is not right,” he said.

Gregorio Luke, an art expert originally from Mexico, told Efe that Strickland’s art has the virtue of unveiling “the agenda of dehumanization” against immigrants in the current political conjuncture. efe

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