A ghostly portrait of a great-great-grandfather who immigrated from Ireland to Scotland to England to the USA. Arriving in 1868, after the Civil war and Abraham Lincoln’s death. He became a railroad foreman for the Union Pacific. Because he had extensive experience in using blasting powder in the coal mines of Scotland and because of his outstanding ability to supervise men he was put in charge of the blasting for the railroad bed construction. He supervised this work from the Wasatch Tunnel in Echo Canyon to Promontory Point west of Corrine, Utah. This series starts with telling the story of 1 immigrant family as they helped build the transcontinental railroad across America. With the help of researchers and scholars, I am learning about other descendants and their relatives who also worked on the building of the Transcontinental railroad. As I learn about these forgotten and unmentioned builders of America, I am painting them into my metal art. Forever.
My art will also speak about the non-white workers and how their personal history was excluded from American pioneer history. How, because of racism, we are still a divided country and how we always will be until the American history books include all the families and hard work that made the United States a superpower. I am the father of mixed race children, grandchildren and born in Mexico myself. This issue of “status” has been my life and this series is very important.