MIAMI – As Mother’s Day loomed, a poignant presentation lined a fence surrounding Southside Park in Miami’s Brickell neighborhood Monday, honoring local victims of gun violence; it’s called “SHOT: We the Mothers Miami.”
“It’s so important to put something like this in the face of the community,” local anti-violence activist Romania Dukes said. “This is everyday gun violence. My son was shot and killed by a stray bullet.”
The work of acclaimed photographer Kathy Shorr contains portraits, objects, and words connected to their lost loved ones. The text is taken directly from the mothers’ social media posts.
“It’s very emotional,” Shorr said. “It’s the kind of thing where you meet somebody for a few hours and you have a connection or a bond where you almost feel like you’ve known them a long time.”
Many of the 44 mothers featured in the photos attended Monday’s unveiling.
The exhibition, a version of which was first unveiled in Philadelphia and is traveling nationwide, aims to raise awareness about the impact of gun violence and the need for action in communities.
It was partially funded by Miami-Dade County Commissioner Eileen Higgins, who felt the installation was vital in the mission to end gun violence.
“Looking at Kathy’s work, she brings these moments to life in a way that just hits you and it’s so hard to look at, but it also forces us to have conversations with ourselves and with our family members about the fact that we need to change gun laws in this country,” Higgins said.
The exhibition is scheduled to be displayed over the next three months.