I talk a lot about my Swedish background, and its influences on my work, as it is something I have had first hand experience with. I’ve traveled there, I know my family there, and I speak the language. I feel less connected to my German heritage simply because it feels more removed. Today though, I feel connected. Both to my German background, and my new home of Maine. I knew that my father was born in Maine while my Opa was stationed at a Navy base in Kittery, Maine. What I did not know, until a recent letter from my Opa, now 96, was that when he came over from Germany with his parents and younger brother at the age of 7, their ship pulled in to none other, than the Portland harbor. A few minutes walk from where I live. And while they then borded a train to their future home in Wisconsin, it feels fitting being back here where my family first set foot on US soil. Pretty neat.
(Unfortunately I cannot locate the actual photos pictured above, but I do have this jpg image that I played with for a silkscreen project several years back, picturing my Grandparents with my young father on a hillside in Maine).