Artist Statement: I grew up never visiting my mother’s home country of El Salvador. She left during the civil war, which concluded when I was toddler. It wasn’t until graduate school, at age 29, that I saw the motherland in person for the first time. Prior to that, I knew El Salvador only from my parents’ stories, books, news media, and the Internet. Everything—even the most mundane scenes and objects—filled me with wonder. This place had become mythological in my mind and now I had finally entered the myth.
Christine Sloan Stoddard is a Salvadoran-American author, artist, and film/theatre professional who lives in Brooklyn. Her books include Desert Fox by the Sea, Belladonna Magic, Water for the Cactus Woman, and other titles. She co-edited Her Plumage: An Anthology of Women’s Writings by Quail Bell Magazine, her literary journal. She has presented work at the Kennedy Center, the New York Transit Museum, Annmarie Sculpture Garden, FiveMyles Gallery, and elsewhere. She is a 2020 Visible Poetry Project filmmaker, Table Work Press playwriting competition winner, and DC Arts Center curatorial fellow.