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THE RIVER OF MIGRATION by Anne Katrine Senstad, 2010
A permanent Light and Land Installation at the non for profit art foundation Life is Art Foundation in Santa Rosa, Sonoma county, California.

Curated by Kirsha Kaechele/Life is Art Foundation

The River of Migration, consists of 72 solar power run lights, that are placed on a mountainside in a long consecutive line, creating a light contour of the landscape. The representational land and light piece creates a spatially drawn line and a geographical mapping of the Californian landscape, and serves as a gestural comment to the politics of migration.

With the intention of light creating a memorial, Senstad illumniates issues of migration as a human river of light of the nameless. The lights are placed as a gestural memorial, in this case, to those who failed to cross the US-Mexican boarder, or were murdered in the process. This permanent installation brings attention to the US boarder politics, the erection of the boarder wall towards Mexico, the fact that California was once Mexican/native American, the violent deaths of people attempting to cross the boarder, as in the murder of the 72 individuals who resisted being used as drug traffickers in the specific case in 2010 that Senstad is referencing as an example, yet is a symbol of numerous fallen in the process due to politics and war. As the solar panel lights are lit from dusk till dawn, when most people cross the boarders illegally, the lights illustrate the nature of migration. The mapped out line of lights down a hillside,talks about the nature of migration, how bodies of peoples crossing long distances by land, will naturally walk in a sequential manner according to age, physical health, group importance and their task within the group.

Life is Art Foundation West originated in New Orleans, LA 2007 - 2010 and was established in California 2010. The River of Migration installation was part of the inaugural opening of the foundation.

 

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