Ten Views, Reconsidered
In 1823, while working as a freelance overseer on the island of Antigua for three years, William Clark (of Lewis & Clark infamy) completed a series of ten paintings of enslaved Africans growing, harvesting, processing and preparing to ship sugar to sell on the international market. He called the set, Ten Views in the Island of Antigua.
100 years later, my great-grandfather, Henry, one of seven children in a family of laborers from Royal’s Estate, emigrated from the island of Antigua to New York City in pursuit of consistent, well-paying work and a better life. He stayed, got married and had three daughters, and eventually eight grandchildren.
Nearly 100 years after that, I learned about the direct relationship between slavery in my family line on the island of Antigua and the founding of Harvard Law School in Cambridge, Massachusetts, which was established from the bequest of the Antiguan-born, slave and plantation owner, Isaac Royall Jr.
Ten Views, Reconsidered speculates on the complex connections between Antigua, slavery, the Royalls, the United States, Harvard University and my immigrant, first and second generation family members, by re-imagining Clark’s historical paintings as digital collages merging the far and the near past into the present.
This collection is part of the forthcoming, The Maria Trilogy project.
12 x 12 inches
M. Asli Dukan ©2020