Lovingly, Dallas (Left) $2000
Fengs (Right) $2000
To Purchase Contact 23 Sandy Gallery
A Portrait of Vera - In 1926 Dallas & Vera Mosebar White sailed from San Francisco to work as nurses in China. They eventually joined Claude & Victoria Miller in Yunnanfu where a compound was established. Young, energetic and bright with idealistic enthusiasm, they proceeded to set up clinics and reach out to the local people of Yunnan and Miao tribe of interior China.
Soon the family of Dallas & Vera White grew as two daughters were added to their household. They faithfully wrote the family “back home” chronicling the intricacies of daily life in a foreign country, introducing the new granddaughters and hoping to ease the pain of separation.
Periodically Dallas and Claude traveled on foot for days to visit local villages, leaving the women to handle the running of the compound with the assistance of servants. In 1931 while on one of those “itinerating” trips the men received word to “make haste” and immediately return home because something terrible had happened. Walking and running they doubled their normal time and covered five miles an hour, hiking sunup to sundown, completing 12 days travel in 6 1/2 days. At last they learned that both women had been tragically murdered leaving Claude alone and Dallas a widower with two infant daughters.
Growing up, I heard bits and pieces of this sensational story numerous times from my mother. I poured over old black and white photographs and piles of fragile handwritten letters with Chinese postmarks, searching for clues to the real identity of Vera White. This body of work pays tribute to my grandmother, Vera, through a series of fabric pieces where images of those vintage letters are screen printed over large batik portraits. In reading the letters and producing this work, I feel I have come to know her.
About this Work - Lovingly, Dallas
Batik on cotton poplin with silkscreen images of vintage letters layered over batik. Tiny attached relief silver figures on bottom right corner. These ornaments were originally stitched on the hats of Chinese children. 27 x 54 inches. One of a kind.
After the untimely death of his wife, Vera, Dallas White struggled to write his wife’s parents of the tragic loss. Here he is shown holding both daughters, my mother being the child on the right. Screen printed over the top of their images are pages of his letter breaking the sad news.
About this Work - Fengs
Batik on cotton poplin with silkscreen images of vintage letters layered over batik. Tiny attached relief silver figures on bottom left corner. These ornaments were originally stitched on the hats of Chinese children. 31.5 x 53.75 inches. One of a kind.
After Vera’s death, Dallas chose to stay in China and continue his work with the local people. Chinese worker, Dora Feng helped to raise his two young daughters. Text printed over this image of Mr. and Mrs. Feng tell the “Folks at Home” of life in Yunnanfu and experiences surrounding the wedding of the Fengs.