I went to South Africa for a month.
In the weeks leading up to the trip, I was warned several times from friends and family, and then the government, that I was in grave danger if I go and that maybe I should reconsider.
Regularly I was emailed State Department warnings and stories found on the internet about horrible violence happening to pure, innocent Americans by horrible South Africans.
So far in my life, I’ve gone undercover in a Peruvian jail, taken bus routes in Israel that were bombed the week before, and lived in New York during 9/11, but this trip to South Africa was the first time that someone was afraid for me based on location. What is this fear? What role does ignorance of place play in the average person being so afraid of a place that they stay away and fear for others safety while there.
What interests me, and what has defined my work is the intersection of where art and social justice meets. With each moment captured, I want to know not just what is happening during that time, but what got the subjects there….how does the history of the place define that moment in time.
AFRAID OF is a multimedia exhibit combining 25 photos taken of daily life in South Africa juxtaposed against text based videos of the warnings I received not only from the US State Department but also those concerned for my safety.