Estle (from the series "Indivisible)
Gift of the artist

Ink, sheet below image right
Ink, sheet below image left: "ESTLE"

"In 1977 a mixed couple moved in right next door to us. Mixed couple, that term is almost making me laugh right now, that was the term back then - now it's inter-racial. // The community's reaction was difinitely not positive. My mom was a very strong person, and you know, somebody came over and started bad mouthing them to her and she was very much like, I don't care what you think, but I'm gonna give them a chance. // We ended up becoming best friends with them versus anyone else in the whole community. They're really great people, Tom and Marty. I went to their daughter's wedding, a year ago. // Black shouldn't be a descriptor. But in describing somebody if somebody was black, I'd say 'the black person who. . . .' I know a lot of people would be very upset with that. In reality it helps you decide who that person is, and it shouldn't make a difference. // People judge my mind based on my legs all the time. It's very much a tonality thing and how they interact with you. It's actually humorous. The level of attention, and the level of discussion can be quite different when I have my (prosthetic) legs on versus when I'm in my wheelchair. // You have to move forward with the fact that you're different. It doesn't give you special rights. It means you have something different to add to the equation. Each one of us has different limitations and different things that we have to deal with in life - and your job is not to figure out how to focus on that but how to continue to move forward. // You have to learn to leverage your strengths and minimize your weaknesses and be as successful and productive as you can." // Estle, 32-years-old, grew up on a farm in South Bend, Indiana. When he was ten, he was in a tractor accident in which he lost both his legs below the knees. He went on to attend Notre Dame and The Harvard Business School, and is now the Marketing Director for a small software company. (Typewritten sheet accompanying print)
Bookmark and Share