Searching: Refugee Quilt


Linda Mushka

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Artist’s statement

I am passionate about the plight of refugees around the world and frustrated by the perpetuation of oppression through promoting differences as negatives.  While getting to know immigrants, both personally and professionally, in my work as a therapist, I am consistently reminded of their courage, strength and resilience.  In this piece I hope to capture the leaving of destruction, fear and struggle with the potential of a path to a safe haven, filled with the promise of a new life.   The future is surrounded and shrouded in uncertainty, represented by the cheesecloth, but one which retains traditions and cultural practices that comfort and sustain, symbolized by the gold medallion.   The piece is named “Searching,” the title of a song I wrote attempting to capture the journey of refugees, and their journey and  mixed feelings.  The last two lines of the song are “hoping we can stay here forever, but longing to go home.”  Adjusting, and fitting into a new society is fraught with feelings of gratefulness, but too often, immigrants are also bombarded with prejudice and hostility.  This piece is dedicated to all people who are forced to leave their homelands, who give up everything they know and love, in search of new and better beginnings.


Linda Mushka was raised and lives in Saskatchewan. She grew up watching her mother knit to the strains of discordant Ukrainian music and dancing in small town halls.  Writing, creating with cloth, and music are her greatest loves. Today, she combines her own and commercial fabrics, along with hand and machine stitching, exploring themes of humanity and nature.


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