“I began this work on the border,” comments Harbage Page, “after I heard a radio broadcast on NPR (National Public Radio). They said that 20% more women and children than men die crossing the U.S.–Mexico border without official papers. I couldn’t get this statistic out of my head, so I decided to go see it with my own eyes. I began to make yearly pilgrimages to the border to photograph the objects that are left behind by border-crossers. The objects that I find speak of a difficult journey and the risks that these individuals are exposed to when they enter the United States. I didn’t want to photograph the individuals in the traditional documentary manner—media and popular culture already do this. I wanted to show these left-behind objects as reliquaries, imbued with power.
Susan Harbage Page
Objects from the Borderlands: Anti-Archive
from the U.S.–Mexico Border Project 2007–2014
(Curated by Manuela De Leonardis)
Presentation of the project and reception with the Artist
Friday, October 24, 6:30pm, 2014
In 2007, the American artist Susan Harbage Page began to create her “Anti-Archive,” Objects from the Borderlands: The U.S.–Mexico “Anti–Archive” project. A collection of objects found along the border between the United States and Mexico that witness a silent immigration that people do not want to see.