Fresa Farms: It's a Whitewash

Fresa Farms shack from installation.
photo by Paul Baker

Fresa Farms: It's a Whitewash is an audio/video installation focused on the farm workers in the strawberry industry of California and the United Farm Workers (UFW) campaign for unionization.  The installation is made up of three parts:

The first part is a 14 minute audio track primarily of interviews I conducted with farm workers in the area of Watsonville over a two-month period (April-June 1997), as well  as audio of related demonstrations, arrests of workers, and related activity. 

Video from inside shack.
photo by Paul Baker

The second part is video of the farms, worker's housing, strawberry picking, demonstrations,arrests, and text from media sources on the industry and campaign.

The third part is an actual strawberry shack, the FRESA FARMS shack.  The visitor enters the shack, and through it sees and hears the actual conditions of the strawberry workers and the California strawberry industry.

artist's statement
campaign fact sheet

Video and strawberry candies inside shack.
photo by Paul Baker

Many many thanks to Janet Swingle, for assistance with video and Martin Franco, for assistance with audio, to Galeria de la Raza, the United Farm Workers Union, Aida Gamez, Emilio Ramon, to Paul Baker for his photos of the installation, and especially to the farmworkers and union organizers who were interviewed and photographed for this project.