Captured Africans (Lancaster, England)
Transatlantic Slave Trade
Lancaster, United Kingdom
Six rectangular perspex blocks, suspended between a rectangular, stainless steel column and an oblong, stone column, rests on a circular base embellished with a mosaic and small metal sculptures. The work is meant to recall the decks of the transatlantic slave ships that carried enslaved Africans to the Americas. The six perspex blocks are inscribed with the names of the different commodity objects these ships transported to and from the Americas: wealth, cotton, rum, mahogany, sugar, and slaves. The stainless steel column lists many of the slave ships that departed from Lancaster and the number of slaves these vessels forcibly seized in Africa. Underscoring the history of these horrific nautical journeys, the mosaic depicts a map detailing the routes of the Transatlantic Slave Trade, while the metal figures personify the trauma and violence of the Middle Passage.