University of Arizona
College of Fine Arts - School of Art

School of Art Galleries

Transcendent Hope

Medium: Embroidered Soft Sculptures
Year: 2020
Dimensions: 4′ x 2′ x 2′

Perla Segovia

Incorporating textiles and textile techniques is important to my work. This is because they resonate with most of us and therefore have the potential of being an effective tool of communication. I have made embroidered natural canvas shoes as signifiers of the immigrant human body, the immigrant body that has left a void behind and has become a void itself. Canvas, a utilitarian fabric, is made of a simple, humble weave, representing common immigrants’ traits of strength, perseverance, resilience and their mighty ability to hold on to hope in the most strenuous of circumstances. A transcendent hope that dates back to time immemorial, during times of borderless territories. These shoes correspond to children who have either died in custody or after being detained by federal immigration agencies at the border. Making shoes is a labor intensive process which resonates with the children’s long strenuous journey and the essential, undervalued work immigrants often do in this nation. It is also important to note that these children are descendants of the same natives that migrated these lands, of the western hemisphere, from north to south, for millennia prior to its colonization. These shoes are made to honor the memory and to celebrate the persevering spirit of immigrant children. They are made to bring attention to the necessity of providing humanitarian relief with dignity and respect to asylum seekers.

The same humanitarian relief shown by the natives to the colonists of this nation who faithfully came to these lands seeking a place of refuge, and seeking a safe place to call home.