Cemí Acrylic & metallic copper pigment on black fabric 20" x 30"
During this quarantine I share my long-time practice of looking to the past for lessons and tools for getting through today’s challenges. Reflecting on my nene’s upcoming birthday, and in these pandemic times, I find it necessary to lift the narrative surrounding home birth.
Eleven years ago (April of 2009), I was trying desperately to go into labor. Almost 2 weeks past my "due date", if I had reached that point in NY it meant I wouldn't be able to birth at home as I had planned. Channeling my frustration into something more positive, I went into my studio and wrote a letter and poem to my son asking him to be born, then created this painting. I had learned of the three-point cemí as a more male energy. I also learned it represented fertility for both agriculture and birthing women. So inspired by my pregnant body, I created my own cemí representing the colors of guanín, a sacred copper ore used to make the caciques’ medallions and associated with the sun. I painted it with metallic acrylics and pigments. The spirals & concentric circles represent fertility and water. The next day my midwife began a series of natural interventions and I went into labor that evening, April 7th, 2009.