Here is the TCK art gallery – Connection. A massive thanks to the contributors who have done a fabulous job. Click on each piece to learn more about it and see it in greater detail. Please leave comments and questions you may have for the fantastic artists who have taken part. Late entries are still accepted for anyone who functions on African time like myself.
We asked Cultural Consultant and TCK expert Tanya Crossman to pick out some of her favourite pieces . Below are the four she chose and a wee bit explaining what she enjoyed about them.
‘Tell me “사랑해”‘ is a wonderful exploration of how we express love, in words and action. Mel pours a bittersweet beauty onto the page: the desire to be loved in the cultural way with which we identify, mixed with the acknowledgement of love expressed another way.
In “Conflicted Connection” Segyo beautifully captures the tentative “rewiring” of repatriation. Her moving box travels across the page, depositing her in a new and yet traditional place. The doors are open as she considers stepping out of her box. A feeling many of us can relate to, I’m sure!
I love Jaree’s piece. It’s a beautiful work, exquisitely captured and full of colour. The story behind it, however, is what really brings it to life for me. It helps me understand that through this work, the artist is bridging worlds, seeing relationships expand and stretch and include even through distance. So very, very TCK.
The anonymous poem “Bridge” is a great meditation expounding on and expanding a single theme. Acknowledging the WORK that goes into building bridges – engineering and schematics – and how it can be tiring, even lonely, at times. But also, how precious the connections can be.
Connection – TCK Art Gallery 2021
A Rather Content Chameleon
“In all honesty, this watercolor was a gift for a dear friend who was moving off to college and leaving me behind. *tears* This friend is also accompanying me on a trip to my home in Songea, Tanzania this summer. Significantly, this will be her first trip overseas and as I write this, she is waiting for her passport to be processed. What an exciting time!
I love the simple fact that I am able to connect a dear friend to a dear place in my heart that not many get to see. Thus is the life of a TCK: so connected to a myriad of different places and people while simultaneously disconnected to each of those places and wondering where we belong all the while.” – Jaree Bell
“Tell Me 사랑해” encapsulates the connection that I have with Korean family members whose ways of showing love are so different than what I have been accustomed to over the past decade or so. Having grown up as a Korean TCK at an American boarding school and then having lived in the U.S. for almost 10 years, my views on how to show and receive love have become very westernized. I have to remind myself that the connection and the bond that I have with my Korean family is stronger than through the words, “사랑해” (I love you).” – Melanie Hyo-In Han
“A connection from the heart that helps us all grow in love which makes the world a better place. The feeling of acceptance and love when we reach out to each other regardless of age, ethnic backgrounds, or social status.” – Anonymous
“Connection for me is when souls touch, minds are accepting and friendships begin to blossom. When someone starts to know me and accepts me for who I am and the past which lives within. One way I enjoy sharing my mix of cultures with my friends and family is through food. This painting has coriander seeds which are delicious in one’s cup of chai. Stay awhile and I’ll serve up some traditional stew as well. Come connect with me and I will share with you from my soul.” – Anonymous
Title: Conflicted Connection
“I’m back in Korea, my passport country, and connection is complicated. I’m physically here with parts of me elsewhere in the world. Certain beings of myself stuck at airports where I said countless hellos and goodbyes. Certain parts of me here in Korea, but scared to come out of a box. In a country that I once disliked, I’m slowly rewiring myself to see the beauty of Korea and finding my own connections. Conflicting thoughts of rejection, fear that I will love it, fear that I will belong, these are all thoughts of a TCK trying to make connections.” – Segyo Oh
“I wrote this poem when I first moved to Chicago back in fall of 2019. Amidst the loneliness I felt and my longing for connection, I began to notice how many homeless individuals I would encounter on my trips to and from grad school. At this point, I thought to myself, “Aren’t I homeless in a way?”. Growing up as a TCK, I have travelled so much that at this point it’s hard to say where I’m from. As I pondered on this realization, I began to feel a sense of connection with homeless individuals and how we both long for connection, despite being uprooted. Yet, there were still times when I avoided interacting with homeless individuals. This poem was my attempt to bridge this distance to be able to better connect with the homeless population in Chicago.” – Robert Turk https://robertturk.wixsite.com/t-h-e-c-e
“The garden” immediately evokes the Garden of Eden, the untainted paradise precedent to the fall of humanity and corruption of the world, and from where Adam and Eve were expelled.
A significant part of my developmental years took place in an Edenesque, rather reclusive place. I was witness to the long, taxing process of construction my dad went under. The fruition of his labor was an organic sanctuary to which I could return to after school. Now it’s impossible to return to her embrace of nourishment and consolation, however she is with me, immortalized in my mind. – Seoyoung Je-
Thanks so much to all the contributors! Please leave a comment telling them how great they all are.