ESTHER ADLER: I've always found Wanted Poster Series Number 17 particularly affecting. The mother has her arms on the boys shoulders in this protective way, but there’s a kind of dejectedness in the sense that in many ways she can't really protect him from a life of hardship. And then above them you have this classic symbol for American freedom and the American way and what a contrast to the word “Sold” at the top of this work. So in many ways it's an indictment of American history and the legacy of slavery.
IAN WHITE: My name is Charles Ian White. I've never seen anyone cry at artwork except his. My father had great aunts that were enslaved so they were able to talk about that experience. He would take trips with his mother starting at about age nine down to Mississippi and meet these aunts, Aunt Bessie, Aunt Missouri.
CHARLES WHITE: There’s been a number of tragedies in my family’s life. We’ve had five lynchings in my family, two uncles and three cousins over a long span of years. I’ve lived in the South, I’ve had unpleasant personal experiences, been beaten up a couple of times, once in New Orleans and once in Virginia. My people were all, lived in rural sections mostly, were all farmers, and yet, at the same time I still maintain in spite of, again, my experiences, my family’s experiences, tragedies. I still feel that man is basically good.