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The Perpetrator Series

The Perpetrator Series defines “the perpetrator” as one who violates a trust. This series is the culmination of decades’ long study of trust and its violation. 


As I worked, the perpetrator claimed the white clay, and I embodied the rest of us in lustrous black. 


This does not mean that human shaped figures, heads or hands that are made of the black clay represent “black” people, or that white images represents “white people.” (See the writing on “Multi-Hued Humanity”). 


The series narrates, in metaphoric terms, the perpetrator’s domination of all of life, from the microbes of the soil, through each of us as individuals and in our social lives, to the largest reaches of our ecosystem. 


Perhaps you think the violations you have suffered are purely personal, representing, perhaps, some defect in your character. I have hoped in this series to make it clear that perpetration is something embedded in our cultural world, something that happens to virtually all of us. 


When you are overpowered by someone who is without empathy or trustworthiness, this is a reality, not a judgement. 


This happened to me and I have been able to make art of it. If this art helps you see what you are seeing, abandon denial, stop excusing and normalizing violent oppression and empathic failure, then we may be able to change things. 


If you think the world is just fine as it is, then this is probably not the art for you.

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