In making America underscores the creation of American identity and culture, from its origins in Indigenous American societies to waves of historical and contemporary immigration, which have all contributed to an American identity abundant with diverse belief systems and cultures.
The central component of the sculpture is the turtle shell which references the Iroquois mythology that the entirety of the earth rests upon the back of a turtle. From the shell sprouts a plethora of elements: criss-crossing horns embellished with wire mesh, tendrils of dyed fabric, a conch shell upholding a wooden idol and a porcelain statuette. The variety of elements underscore the entanglements, destructions and violences and reparative connections inherent in American history.
The full title of the work is as follows: "In making America, In Civilizing nature, taking it out, to sell, the Indian in conquest to its east and it’s west, with prickly feet like antler tips broke bark, opened, entered, wildly and loudly like sour pickle, tuned instruments to tell truth and lie tangled and dangled behind it’s shell, headless."