I was invited to exhibit at the Galerie Sainte-Catherine in Rodez, France, which is in a thirteenth-century building that was once a monastery, a military barracks, and is now a contemporary art exhibition space. Depending on La Perspective both the military and the religious presence had made widows of many.
I asked my French artist friends to let me make a clear plastic cast of one of their arms and to sign the cast after I had dealt them a card telling them they were assigned to either the military or to a religious organization.
The monastery group was light-hearted, writing jokes and satirical sayings on their casts. The military group was somber, writing epitaphs and, ironically, prayers for peace.
I then lit and mounted the casts, the military with red lights, the monks with gold, each in their own space.
But both the military and religious orders had great hats, hence the helmet and bishop’s mitre. And, of course, a set of widow’s weeds, made from dyed kozo fiber, peeking from her perspective behind a wall separating the two killing fields.
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