Each tablet in this standing mobile was made by pressing layered paper saturated with hardening agents against huge cannonballs, weapons that were fired from ships during the 1480 Ottoman invasion of Otranto, Italy.
More intimately, I have pressed my skin against the chests of uncles and father, grandfathers, lovers, and childhood friends. They held me against their bare chests in summer heat; so close the smell of their sweat stuck to my body. Those beautiful experiences are stored in memory as safe spots.
That's why I made this mobile. I look at it every day. It's hanging in my studio.
All of the men I honor in this mobile fought in wars-- World War I, n World War II, Korea, Viet Nam, Desert Storm, Iraq. The men shared tenderness as they hugged me so that we could reinforce trust in humanity, and they could transcend the horrors of what they had seen.