dawn_chorusiii: the fruit they don’t have here

December 3, 2021 – January 29, 2022
41 Ross

41 Ross Alley
San Francisco, CA

Image courtesy of 41 Ross.

Image courtesy of 41 Ross.

Presented by CCC and artist Sofía Córdova, dawn_chorusiii: the fruit they don’t have here is an experimental video work that foregrounds the stories of six Bay Area women who journeyed to the United States as refugees, fleeing due to political and religious persecution, extreme poverty, and gender violence. Eschewing traditional documentary methods, the work intermingles fact and fictional devices to reveal the nuances and complexities of migration.

This project is the culmination of a two year-long, community-based storytelling process in which Córdova and CCC worked closely with community-based organizations such as Gum Moon Women’s Residence and El/La Para TransLatinas to identify women interested in sharing their stories and participating in an artistic collaboration. Prioritizing each woman’s voice and creative agency, Córdova collaborated with them individually to craft a retelling of their journeys from China, Columbia, El Salvador, Guatemala, and more. Through scripted lines over co-created collages, backdrops, animation, interviews and voicemails, and more, dawn_chorusiii weaves together each woman’s stories to both enhance and complicate their hard truths.

“This work is about the birds, rivers, trees, fruit, forests, apartment blocks, and the people and streets of six lives and the forces that lead one to leave the treasured and familiar behind. This work stresses that the future and the present and the past are never apart from one another and that borders and detention only serve those in power. These stories are told using WhatsApp audio recordings, phone interviews, and scripted lines. Sometimes over animation, sometimes over large backdrops painted by the interlocutor before them. Not all is told or told to conform with realism. There are holes and omissions in the telling of these stories, sometimes with pointed intention, sometimes without.”— Sofía Córdova

dawn_chorusiii will be on view December 3, 2021 to January 29, 2022 at 41 Ross, a neighborhood art space that brings together local residents, neighbors, and visitors to engage in art and culture-making activities. Premiering this work in the heart of Chinatown is an important element of the work. As one of America’s oldest neighborhoods, Chinatown has served as a sanctuary for generations of immigrants, making it a relevant and site-specific venue for the project.

This work contains stories which include violence, abuse, and mentions of suicide, which might affect some audiences and might not be apt for children. Viewer discretion is advised.