Suzanna Bobadilla: Your work seems to frequently touch on the theme of transnational. Could you share how this international perspective shapes your work?
Kim Milan: It’s important to be present in the fact that no one is objective. Everyone is subjective — we all have our subjective experience. In order to inspire others to name their own subjectivity, I want to lead with that. I never want to ask something of someone that I’m not willing to give. I lead with this understanding that so much of the work that I do is informed by how I have grown up, growing up in a mixed race household, growing up as an immigrant, growing up in Canada but going back to the Caribbean a lot, and I now I live in the United States.
I’ve gotten to see how interconnected the world is. I remember when I was backpacking through Nicaragua where all of these old men had pesticide sprayers attached to their back. I get to see it on one end, but also on the other when I’m in a store in the US and I have a choice to buy those bananas. Recognizing that I have a privilege to travel around the world where borders are determined by other people, I always want to make sure that I am giving that access to other people. All of these systems are made by people and they can and will be unmade by people.
We’ve seen that a lot of education can get hoarded in educational institutions and a lot of people don’t really have access to what’s going on. Now that we have the Internet, we can share that a little bit more and it’s important to really share and educate as many people as possible to share how much power we have and how interconnected we are.