The most inane obstacle that undocumented immigrants face upon reaching U.S. soil is the 670-mile border wall that Congress erected after passing the 2006 Secure Border Fence Act. The author meditates on its architecture through her meetings with half a dozen visual artists. Conceptual artist Susan Harbage Page photographs and collects the objects immigrants leave behind during their border crossing. Artist and curator Mark Clark organizes “Art Against The Wall” exhibitions in which artists festoon the border wall with brilliantly colored canvases (until the Border Patrol takes them down). Rigoberto Gonzalez is an oil painter who recreates life-size images of narco-violence in the style of seventeenth-century Baroque masters. Santa Barraza paints a Virgen de Guadalupe in Kingsville every December. At the end of the chapter, the author witnesses the arrest of two undocumented immigrants less than a mile from the Rio Grande.
Keywords: 2006 Secure Border Fence Act, border wall, U.S. Mexico border, undocumented worker, U.S. Border Patrol, Rio Grande Valley, activist art, Susan Harbage Page, Santa Barraza, Rigoberto Gonzalez
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