Oil on Belgian Linen, 20" x 20"
The allegorical painting alludes to the displacement of African people. A young woman looks steadily from the canvas, her natural hair swept back. Dressed in a white buttoned-up filigree lace blouse, the ebony-toned figure appears incongruous, as if she was given these unfamiliar clothes to wear. She is like a bird displaced from its home environment, forced to weave a nest using “showy and bizarre bits of this or that…which seem to violate all the traditions of its kind,” in the words of naturalist John Burroughs. The three speckled eggs nestled on top of the woman’s head associate her with the displaced bird.
Perched on the shoulder of the young woman, another bird holds one of the eggs in its beak. With displacement, one becomes vulnerable to predators, such as this crow-like creature.