Sketch: The genocide in Rwanda represented as a large Falla in the Passeo de las Germanias in Gandia

Sketch for paintings of the genocide in Rwanda represented as a large Falla (also e.g.) in the Passeo de las Germanias in Gandia, Spain, 2006, watercolour and body colour, approx 90 x 64 cm

Picture Components

The Clouds

  • These represent my hopes of the coming storm when we will rise up against our rulers and stop them from causing, contributing to or by omission or any other way participating in the destruction of human beings. But I will replace these clods with a dark but clear blue sky.

  • There will be no storm.

  • Public opinion will not punish our politicians.

  • What we need to do is to create political structures which stop them from behaving the way they do, in this case, which force them to take action to stop the genocide.
    - What are they doing in Darfour?
    - What are they dong to stop the war for profit in Iraq?

The Birds

  • These represent nature.

  • They do as they do do and are wholly impassive to our crimes against each other no matter how huge.

  • The birds here play the role that the depiction of galaxies play in other of my pictures - the demonstration of the infinite wonderment to be found in our universe and the imbecility of thinking oneself better then the next person.

The Buildings

  • These are the edifices built by the colonial powers out of the suffering of human beings and whose actions or inaction have contributed to the Rwandan genocide.

    Five of these are shown whih in the finished work will include France, Belgium, USA, UK, and possibly China.

  • France - were the principal sponsors of the Rwandan Hutu Power govenment and supplied it with money and shipments of arms in the time preceding and throughout the genocide and only stopped withthe dispersal of Hutu Power militias from the UN refugee camps by the Rwandan Patriotic Front. A formal enquiry opened in 2005 is currently investigating allegations that the French Army conspired in the genocide.

  • Belgium - between 1895 and 1912 agents of King Leopld II of Belgium massacred between 4 and 8 and possibly over 10 million people in the Congo. Before the Belgian colonialisation of Rwanda the term Hutu meant husbander of the soil and Tutsi meant husbander of cattle. Belgians then created an artificial racial distinction between Tutsis and Hutus which with additional postcolonial meddling by Belgian missionaries led to the genocidal philosophy and rise of Hutu Power.

  • USA - the United States was created on the back of the genocide of the indiginous native American population. During the Rwandan genocide the USA govenment worked against any UN action which might have been taken to prevent the killings. They did their best to prevent the Rwandan Patriotic Front from ousting the Hutu Power government or expelling the genocidaires from the UN financed Hutu Power controlled refugee camps.

  • UK - the industrial revolution of the United Kingdom was financed by the slave trade. UK ships carried manufactured goods from UK to Africa. Then they carried slaves from Africa to the West Indies and America, and returned to the UK with raw materials - sugar, cotton, tobacco. During the Rwandan genocide the UK opposed any intervention by the UN and then gave support to the Hutu Power dominated UN refugee camps whilst opposing the eventually successful Rwandan Patriotic Front's fight against Hutu Power.

  • China - China has colonised Mongolia and Tibet but the main reason I am thinking of including China here is that they supplied the machetes that were the favoured killing implement of the genocide. Also they, together with all the other members of the security council failed to put in an effective UN peacekeeping force.

The Sun Is Setting

I hope on this form of abuse of human beings. It is a desparate hope but hope nevertheless

The Wonky Architecture

This is because to me the works of human beings are principally organic affairs. Even so, they display sufficient organisation to demonstrate coordinated motivativated behaviour. Thus the miseries of colonialism and the slave trade were the result of the ruthless pursuit of power, wealth, priviledge, status etc etc. by individuals.

The upper story windows

These look into the shadowy world of power of smoke filled rooms well out of sight of the public.

The second story windows

with their glittering ballrooms in which the great and the good display their weatlth and TV soap like lives. These are a distraction from the realities of the world which we the masses prefer to attend to. This is not harmless fun. It is part of what keeps us in our place.

The Riot Police

These are the protectors of the state from the govened.

The Dancing Statues

These represent the joys of colonialism. The fun with which money and wealth and power is acquired. This joy is echoed in the figures below dancing as they slash at their victims with machetes. I might put whips in the hands of the dancing statues.

The Trees

These together with the birds and the lamps are a principal reference to the passeo de los Germanias in Gandia.

The Lamps

The genocide took place in the full light of day.

The background of people holding flaggs

These represent the nations of the earth all of whom were spectators to the genocide and did nothing to stop it.

Value of original: 3000.00.
Print on A4 glossy photo paper: 20.00.
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Page last modified: 18:37 Monday 13th. May 2013