There Is No "Why" In Forgiveness was exhibited along with a video entitled Studio Process for TIN"Y"IF  2015 depicting the layering of materials used throughout the installation. 


Also on display as part of this piece in the exhibition were maquettes, various items displaying alternative forms considered during the project, and an element entitled Forgive Yourself: Quotes & News URLs on Forgiveness.  This was a stack of notecards enscribed with various quotes and news article titles with URLs to stories about forigiveness that gallery visitors were invited to take with them.

Curator statement for "there is no 'why' in forgiveness"

KC Rosenberg

Associate Professor and chair of First Year Program

Teaching at CCA since 1996

Modesto Covarrubias

Lecturer in First Year Program

Teaching at CCA since 2013

“There Is No ‘Why’ In Forgiveness” is a response to the recent church shooting in Charleston, South Carolina and how the families who lost loved ones were able to find grace in their loss through forgiveness.  Listening to NPR recordings of the families’ voices as they struggled and ultimately succeeded in forgiving the shooter inspired Rosenberg and Covarrubias to explore the “structure of their forgiveness” and attempt to create a physical presence that could represent such a complex emotional state. As artists, they wanted to know what forgiveness looked like, how it felt, sounded, tasted and smelled. Their installation offers the beginnings of an answer and involves multiple dimensions – 1D text cards, 2D paper and textiles, 3D layered columns, 4D video showing the compression of those layers and the 5D emotional power of their chosen subject.


The installation suggests that forgiveness begins dark and heavy, uneven, and awkward at the foundation, and then over time, it rises slowly upward, layer by layer.  As it rises, it becomes lighter, more transparent and reflective until it achieves what can be considered “a state of grace.”  This single column of layered textiles and tracing paper stretching up to the highest point of the gallery (and beyond) represents both the structure and the power of forgiveness.  What Rosenberg and Covarrubias have learned in the process is that if we hold onto violence and hate it benefits no one – it only extends that violence and hate to others and that by forgiving others, we also forgive ourselves. 


Mara Holt Skov

Curator, Adjunct Professor in Graduate Studies, Industrial Design and Critical Studies at CCA

August 2015


There Is No "Why" In Forgiveness Project Information


There is No "Why" In Forgiveness.  A multi-media sculptural installation. 

Collaboration with KC Rosenberg.

Stacked blanket squares, textiles, tracing paper, and ink; mixed media, video.

Overall dimensions variable.  Forgiveness Tower: approximately 18 x 4.5 x 4.5 feet.



Created for the exhibition Expanding Dimensions: The California College of the Arts Faculty Exhibition, Fall 2015.

Tecoah Bruce Gallery in the Oliver Art Center, California College of the Arts,

5212 Broadway, Oakland, CA.

Curated by Mara Holt Skov.

Exhibition dates:  August 24 to October 7, 2015.