2015 Copyright Mary Mihelic, Artist.  All rights reserved.

This artwork reflects on the hundreds of thousands of Africans fleeing the Boko Haram and ISIL and crossing the Mediterranean in everything from rickety old fishing boats to cruise ships.  Thousand have died at sea while others are being born there.  Francesca Marina was born on an Italian Navy ship after her pregnant Nigerian mother was saved by Italy’s Marina Militare Navy.  Her mother then named her after them.  

The text art connects the sacrament of baptism with drowning since it has been reported some Muslims have been throwing Christians overboard (for Catholics, the sacrament of baptism is a requirement to get into heaven).  The baptism of Khalid Sheikh refers to Sarah Palin’s statement, “Waterboarding is how we baptize terrorists.”  Khalid Sheikh Mohammed is an Islamic terrorist being held at Guantanamo Bay who has been subjected to waterboarding.  He is described as the “principal architect of the 911 attacks.”  The artwork examines the ethics around any confession obtained under these “enhanced interrogation methods”.  It contrasts that confession with confession as another one of the Catholic sacraments. 

Detail imagery shows terrorists in life jackets. The “ripped notebook paper” is made from the artist’s old drawings -- what she considers her notes.  Here it symbolizes ships capsized. 

60” x 46”

Mixed Media on paper