Mikaela Curry and Joe Gallenstein
Kenton County / North Carolina
Water is life
And for generations
Our lives were defined
By this river
Coal and tobacco
Liquor and corn
Up and down
Ashland, Portsmouth, Maysville..
Generations worked the land
Laid and rode the rails
Follow the river and the jobs
Along the Ohio.
Artist Statement: This picture shows the confluence of the Licking River with the Ohio River, from a time when I was reflecting on the first people who had lived in good relationship with this river for generations and generations, at this spot commonly understood to be an important crossing for those seeking freedom along the Underground Railroad, I thought of those who crossed, and those who didn't, of those who sought to prevent them, of the generations that remain, of the generations to come
Mikaela Curry is a poet, community organizer and environmental scientist. She is a member of the Empower Kentucky Leadership Network and helped design the just transition revisioning process that led to this art exhibit.
Joe is a lifetime Kentucky resident, and has been a member of KFTC since being a student at the University of Kentucky. Currently he's an organizer with KFTC out of the Covington office, and works closely with members in the Northern Kentucky and Rolling Bluegrass chapters.
He lives in Covington with his wife Alex, their two children (Dylan and Ella), three cats (Frodo, Gimli, and Spike), and dog (Flash).