Carved in Clay
Kay Healy began interviewing refugee seniors from the non-profit organization SEAMAAC in 2008, focusing on the seniors' relationship to the concept of home, site, and the many transitions refugees must endure. Each unfired clay sculpture represented one of the seniors and was inscribed with text from their interview. The pieces were inspired by ancient Sumerian cuneiform tablets, the oldest record of writing. In the tradition of the cuneiform tablets, the clay was left unfired and was allowed to disintegrate in the elements. The remaining clay was then reshaped and new text was carved into another two stages of sculptures to emphasize the metaphor of destruction and rebirth that is central to our lives.
Healy screenprinted books of the seniors' stories, which were available for free at the outdoor gallery. This exhibition was funded in part by the Leeway Foundation Art and Change Grant and could not have happened without the support of SEAMAAC seniors and staff.