As someone who accompanies immigrants to their ICE check-ins, I know the arbitrary and draconian nature of current policy. I see America’s government breaking apart families and creating communities that live in fear. I want to get the message to America that there is no us or them; that everyone seeking a better life is welcome here. We have to build human connections between the undocumented and the rest if we are to change policy and tear down the walls. Us Against the Wall brings humanity to this inhuman crisis. As an artist who has created art installations to deal with difficult issues, I naturally turned to my art to cope with this crisis.
Ellen is a visual artist/photographer whose work focuses on issues of social justice. She is a recipient of a Lower Manhattan Cultural Council Grant and a Ford Foundation grant, and has performed work under grants from Knight, Kresge and Google foundations. Her work is exhibited both in the United States and internationally. Her work has been widely covered; in-depth stories have appeared in The New Republic, The Huffington Post, The Daily Mail, Asahi Shimbun and other publications. She is a Josephine Herrick teaching photographer, focusing on teaching recent immigrant teens. She is a member of Soho Photo Gallery in New York City and holds a BFA with honors from Pratt Institute in Brooklyn, New York. ellenjacob.com