A Mixed Media Installation, 1994 Fine Art Gallery, University of Maryland (UMBC). USA

Materials: Quilted Recycled Parachute, Hospital Curtains and Home Linens, Copper Rings, A Leaf, Book Pages, Transfered Photographs on Plaster Casts, Tea Bags and Tea.

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  It was near the end of ’91 when I noticed the tea bags for the first time. The TV in my living room had been on for days. It sent us the news of how America was successfully attacking Iraq. I felt endless thirst. My kitchen sink was soon filled with used tea bags. They started to form a mountain. When they had thoroughly dried, they looked wounded, lifeless. Those tea bags in my kitchen sink reminded me of the dead bodies in that foreign land.

In my living room the TV continued its display of current war disasters. There were no blood and no screams. These scenes made me remember a different association I had with tea.

In Asia people believe tea cleanses things. My grandmother used to clean the house with recycled tea leaves. She would spread wet tea leaves on the Tatami throughout the house and then sweep them up. Especially on winter mornings, I remember watching the steam rising from the warm tea leaves and the smell of tea filling the whole house while they sucked up all the dirt and dust from the air and the floor.

This installation grew out of those memories.