Artist's Statement

Virginie Kippelen

A river is an essential element in what humans consider beautiful and the Flint River is no different. It is perceived in the collective imagery of the Southeast as a “sinuous beauty” flowing through the hills of the Georgia Piedmont all the way to the Florida Panhandle, 344 miles farther south.

As one of the longest free-flowing rivers in the United States, the Flint has yet humble beginnings. Some of its headwater streams emerge from beneath Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport, famously known as the busiest airport in the nation. The Aerotropolis, not only displaced residents and fractured the surrounding neighborhoods back in the 1970s, it also buried the river in pipes and culverts, making it invisible to most. As the airport grew, the Flint river’s headwaters disappeared from the map.

Looking for the Flint attempts to restore a visual identity to the river’s origins while challenging the constructed notion of beauty in our anthropocenic new world.