Back in the 1980s, 8-year-old Guadalupe Maravilla, from Salvador, stood at the United States border along with countless other undocumented children. He didn’t become a U.S. citizen until he was 26. Shortly afterwards, he was diagnosed with colon cancer. Maravilla recovered in 2013, and today attributes his cancer to the physical and mental struggles that accompanied his migration journey. References to both his illness and his healing are scattered throughout this dynamic display. Maravilla’s series of towering sculptures, for instance, composed of materials collected across Central America, are called “Disease Throwers.” On the walls, a mural reinterprets the Salvadoran children’s game “Dirty Guts,” which sees two players taking turns drawing lines that can’t intersect, and offered distraction during the difficult months of border crossing. And small devotional paintings, known as retablos, chronicle Maravilla’s fight to regain health. —E.C.
P.P.O.W Gallery 392 Broadway, New York, NY 10013 Get Directions »