The men are spiritual self portraits, conveying the imposition of my white maleness on the world. They are awkward, bloated, looming, threatening and uncertain, solemn and laughable, self-important and retiring, grounded and adrift, affable and oblivious. They are sympathetic, sensitive, well-meaning, obliging and obliged; they are sore and they are sorry.
The boys embody my love and hope for my son, but also my fear, my recognition of how his privileged position as a white male is shaping him and how it will continue to do so in ways beyond my control. I hope to convey something of the ambivalence I feel towards that privilege, the conflict between principles of social equity that I hold dear and the particular case of my son, wanting, what is best for him, and knowing that overwhelming privilege is not what’s best for him or for anyone.
— Mark Nathan Stafford