AND THE WALLS COME TUMBLING DOWN 2011, Mixed Media, 20" x 34," (Collection of the artist).
Jacqueline T. Casale's mixed-media painting "And the Walls Come Tumbling Down" derives from imagery of walls throughout history - from the Roman Emperor Hadrian's wall in England, the Great Wall of China, the Berlin Wall, the wall in Palestine and now the walls on the border of Arizona and Mexico. History demonstrates that walls are always a failed policy of exclusion, that instead of strength and power, they reveal inner weakness and desperation. They never work. They usually appear in the last days of empires as futile gestures of protection against the inevitable.
Casale spent her childhood and youth in Latin America: Puerto Rico and Peru. Upon her arrival in the U.S. mainland, she immediately witnessed mindless and cruel bigotry against Latinos. Today, she sees recent anti-immigration legislation and walls in Arizona as another example of the hypocrisy and ignorance of much of the American public. If the German philosopher Ludwig Feuerbach was right, and you are what you eat, certainly the majority of Americans have eaten enough tortilla chips, tacos and enchiladas to be honorary Latinos! American culture has always been a mix of the traditions of immigrant groups - and Latino culture has been the oldest and strongest contributor.
Now living and working close to another "wall of exclusion" in the Middle East, the Apartheid Wall in Palestine, she sees American tax dollars supporting another racist and bigoted enterprise, also doomed to fail. The Palestinians and the Latinos are both struggling to achieve basic human rights and dignity. The good news from history is that "the walls will come tumbling down" - a line from an old African-America Christian spiritual by Paul Robeson and Mahalia Jackson in their struggle for civil rights.
For more information about American-Puerto-Rican artist Casale please