04: A Worse Yesterday - Alice Leora Briggs, Cornucopia

Alice Leora Briggs
American, b. 1953

Ink on board
Museum Purchase with the Charter Member Endowment Fund, NEHMA

Alice Leora Briggs was born – and continues to live and work – in Texas. She has taught painting, drawing and other media at several universities and art schools throughout the country including The School of the Art Institute of Chicago, the University of Iowa and the University of Arizona. 

When she was seven years old, Briggs’ brother fell to his death in Grand Teton National Park. Perhaps as a result, Briggs probes with curiosity and intensity those facets of human life that we often seek to closet.

Briggs lives in a U.S./Mexican border town, Cornucopia, which is known for its drug violence and inspired this work. She stated: “We easily make distinctions between cruelties perpetuated by our species and those caused by the rest of ‘nature’. We argue that our violence is self-consciously different, better or worse than the sometimes-disastrous consequences of gravity, magnetism or weather. I am less and less certain about the dichotomy: nature vs. culture… I portray the world with all its imperfections, but I do so with reverence.”