Archival pigment print of Blanca Barrera, measuring 16x20 inches.
This project was made possible with the support of a Civic Engagement Grant from the Ursinus Center for Advocacy, Responsibility and Engagement (UCARE).
Blanca. That’s all she goes by, has been working in BWC as a cleaner for half as long as many of us have been alive. Shy, and spunky, Blanca quietly keeps to herself as she cleans the bathrooms of the dorm halls humming unfamiliar tunes to no one in particular. She sings unwritten ballads of love to God and to her long lost son up above, whom she thinks of fondly every time a tall young man walks by while she sweeps the halls. In peaceful anguish, these ‘cantarias’ bring her back to her youthful days and dreams of being a singer, while calming her heart with joy and tranquility for a life lost too soon. Verses and prose of gospel keep her days at peace as she happily serenades the Lord up above with joyful odes of praise. And while many may not know her name she remains a constant fixture of Ursinus, calling BWC her home throughout the halls that she roams.
‘El Espíritu de Dios se mueve en mi, yo danzo como David.
El Espíritu de Dios se mueve en mi, yo danzo como David.
Yo danzo, yo danzo, yo danzo como David.
Yo danzo, yo danzo, yo danzo como David.’
Copyright of the underlying work is held by the artist. The digital image presented here is for educational purposes only and is not for commercial use.
student art, 2015, documentary photography, Ursinus College, staff, portrait, photograph, archival pigment print