Architect Ronald Rael has poignantly captured the human dimension of the U.S.-Mexico border wall with an installation piece that will make it rain on your face.
Rael, who is an architecture professor at the University of California at Berkeley, along with Virginia San Fratello, associate professor of design at San Jose State, installed childrenâ€™s see-saws between the wall that separates Mexico and the United States.
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One of the most incredible experiences of my and @vasfsfâ€™s career bringing to life the conceptual drawings of the Teetertotter Wall from 2009 in an event filled with joy, excitement, and togetherness at the borderwall. The wall became a literal fulcrum for U.S. - Mexico relations and children and adults were connected in meaningful ways on both sides with the recognition that the actions that take place on one side have a direct consequence on the other side. Amazing thanks to everyone who made this event possible like Omar Rios @colectivo.chopeke for collaborating with us, the guys at Taller HerrerĂa in #CiudadJuarez for their fine craftsmanship, @anateresafernandez for encouragement and support, and everyone who showed up on both sides including the beautiful families from Colonia Anapra, and @kerrydoyle2010, @kateggreen , @ersela_kripa , @stphn_mllr , @wakawaffles, @chris_inabox and many others (you know who you are). #raelsanfratello #borderwallasarchitecture #teetertotterwall #seesaw #subibaja
The installation, entitled Teetertotter Wall, is located at the border in El Paso, Texas and Juárez, Mexico. As Rael explains on Instagram, the piece has been a decade in the making.
â€śOne of the most incredible experiences of my and [San Fratelloâ€™s] career bringing to life the conceptual drawings of the Teetertotter Wall from 2009 in an event filled with joy, excitement, and togetherness at the borderwall,â€ť Rael wrote on Instagram.
In the photos and videos, children play on fuschia-pink see-saws, offering a visual reminder of profound human connection through the social constructs that separate us.
â€śThe wall became a literal fulcrum for U.S.-Mexico relations and children and adults were connected in meaningful ways on both sides with the recognition that the actions that take place on one side have a direct consequence on the other side,â€ť he continued.
The economic disparity between the two countries is visible in the photos, but so is the shared humanity.
On both sides, the children smile brightly, excited to play with one another, while the adults appear to treasure this moment of connection.
Itâ€™s a beautiful, sobering reminder that, despite xenophobic forces, humanity will always triumph.
The humanity of this. â™Ąď¸Ź https://t.co/18605kTL26— Michelle Bhasin (@michellebhasin) July 30, 2019