toward the light

70 x 50 cm
acrylic on canvas
I recently heard this saying: “when you put a forest on fire, you should not be surprised when the animals come running out to seek protection.” Yet: some in Europe seem still to be surprised and angry that these people are looking for a better life at our side of the sea. Rather than trying to solve the root causes of migration: war, oppression and poverty, they prefer walls and barriers to keep these sad people out of our paradise. A paradise built on centuries of colonization and slavery. The title of this work is a quote from Rudyard Kipling's poem ‘the White Man’s Burden’. Condensed in a few lines of poetry, he unwittingly expresses the extreme arrogance of mainstream Western thinking towards non-Western nations. The image of the White Man as the saviour of all those non-white people who are seen as underdeveloped savages, lost in darkness, in need of salvation, has been used to sugarcoat a reality of exploitation, imperialism and racism. A reality that lives on until today. available, € 1.440,-