University of Minnesota
Center for Holocaust & Genocide Studies


  • Vivian Bower

    Vivian Bower

    Rwanda: Personal Images

    Artist Statement

    "Hell is naked before him and destruction has no covering." (From the Book of Job)

    This work is a response to the genocide which took place in Rwanda in 1994/95. From the distance and solitude of my studio, I tried to "bear witness" by taking the horrifying images and words which had come to me through the media and incorporating them into drawings. Using texture, mark; collaging photographs and text, I created images, sometimes "burying" them like the bodies themselves to be uncovered through closer examination of the drawing; sometimes piling them like the corpses thrown into mass graves; sometimes creating featureless faces to represent the thousands of men, women and children who were so violently murdered during this tragic period. Hopefully this work will encourage others to look and reflect as I have.

    Vivian Bower


    Rwanda: Personal Images Gallery



    Site constructed with permission of the artist.