It’s about the look of borders come manifest, the effects on the people and the land, and creating the intersections to bring it all home.
Up Against the Wall is a comparative, visual exploration of nation state-imposed borders as they physically evolve. It’s a photographic documentation project that currently uses the southern United States border, Israel’s walls in occupied Palestine, and the structure used to cut off Spanish Melilla from Morocco, as focus.
Many of you supported Up Against the Wall during the 2011 incarnation in Minneapolis, Minnesota, a month-long show that included over 12 grassroots organizations. Since, I have been based at the southern United States border updating my photographic work of that developing border and fine tuning this project. There has recently been some prominent and broad exposure of Up Against the Wall, including in The Wall Street Journal, Slate Magazine and on the Washington D.C. based news program, The Heat.
I am now asking for support to bring Up Against the Wall back to the public sphere in a much more dynamic and engaging way. I am building a new, bigger installation of Up Against the Wall and plan to take it on the road starting in 2016.
This new exhibition will consist of large format, transparent prints displayed in frameless plexiglass. This completely transparent and large-scale presentation will permit the viewer to engage the images from both sides, creating a much more in-depth experience and understanding of the global border system. I will essentially be able to bring the borders to the people, in order to more deeply expose those of us not forced up against these walls to exactly what they look like and offer a small glimpse of how they feel.
Money raised via this kickstarter campaign will go toward building the show, including the transparent, large scale photographs, the plexiglass, hardware to keep it all together and lighting to illuminate it for you. I will also use funds to print show materials such as the 20 page, full color glossy magazine you could get as one of the great kickstarter perks for supporting Up Against the Wall. Any left over money will go to help offset transportation costs.
Can you help me meet my goal?
The project began in 2002 as I watched Israel start construction on what is now a nearly 500 mile long wall inside the Palestinian West Bank. At the time, the idea of a physical, militarized structure that displaces and separates as a solution to something deemed a problem blew my mind. I began to research spots around the globe where lines in the sand took form and yet were being crossed by those willing to risk life in attempt. I found such a solution was not so unusual.
Since, I have been traveling to and photographing these locations, including at Slovakia and Ukraine, Croatia and Serbia, Spanish Melilla at Morocco, the southern United States and Israel's walls at Gaza and the West Bank.
Ample documentation exists of the people impacted by these structures yet little visual documentation seems to exist of the structures themselves and even less that set side by side all of the structures together. Up Against the Wall helps fill that documentation void.
To juxtapose these structures not only allows us to visually comprehend global connections of power but to also make space to identify intersections of social movement work. At every stage of Up Against the Wall, I work with organizations and communities on a spectrum of social issues to highlight those intersections of our collective experiences and struggles. In this way, the reality of that which divides us is subverted into bridges that connect, and through these collaborations, solutions are offered.
If you find Up Against the Wall worthy, please give what you can. Help me get this show on the road.
Also, if you are willing, please share Up Against the Wall with your family, friends, followers. Help me bring these borders to the world, to your city, to your organization.
And, if you know of a gallery, organization or other potential host for Up Against the Wall, send me a message.
I believe that art can move people to act and together, we can help make Up Against the Wall a part of that reality.
I thank you for your support and I look forward to seeing you on the road.
For more information, please visit FloWalksFree.com
All images and text: Copyright © 2015, K. Flo Razowsky. All rights reserved.
No image use granted without written approval from artist.
Risks and challenges
For those of you who know me, you know that I have grand visions and great success with putting those visions to reality. For those of you who don't yet know me and because it is important to know who you are funding, I have listed below a few of my major solo project accomplishments over the years.
For a more detailed resume, including collaborations, solo projects and works published, please visit http://www.FloWalksFree.com/About-Me/
• Welcome to Palestine, 2006
"A photographic glimpse into life under the Israeli military occupation of Palestine through the lens of a Jewish American," was my first solo photography exhibition and saw over 200 people on opening night.
• Café Intifada, an intellectual salon, 2007 & 2009
An interactive, engaged theater piece, "Where the Audience Becomes the Occupied and the Occupier," that played to sold out audiences for its two-week run.
• Up Against the Wall, 2011
A 40+ piece solo photographic installation that opened to more then 400 people and hosted over 12 grassroots organizations during its month-long run. "A comparative photographic exploration project to visually explore nation state-imposed borders as they physically evolve."
I have spent my life kept sane through the lens of a camera. I believe that art can move people to act and I produce creative work to reflect this belief. I combine art with activism to highlight the context in which we live, and I specifically photograph to show this world to those of us who benefit the most, those of us not forced up against the walls of this life.
Currently based at the southern United States border in Nogales, Arizona, I live what I photograph. As much as possible, I spend up to years in the places I shoot, firstly building relationships and getting to know the place and secondly photographing my surroundings based on social issues and community. I have supported liberation movements and photographed in Palestine, Bahrain, Serbia, Ukraine, Berlin, the United States and Mexico.
I have exhibited twice solo since 2005 and have been part of collaborative shows including multiple exhibitions in Minneapolis, MN, at San Francisco's Mission Cultural Center, as part of the University of Arizona's Center for Middle East Studies annual show and at the Nogales Arizona-based Hilltop Gallery.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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