Liquid Gold- Black Gold, the Golden Age of Whaling: Whittier, 2012
“Liquid Gold-Black Gold, the Golden Age of Whaling” connects whale's migration paths, the whalers that pursued them, and the methods of escape by slaves now known as the Underground Railroad. These three systems of movement were examined in order to reveal the moments in which they were directly entwined and engaged with one another. The artworks have been created through the use historic images, documents from the abolitionist movement and narratives written by escaped former slaves. The works of art in this project are expressed and connected through a series of paintings and sculptures that have been exhibited in changing configurations and forms.
The Greenleaf Gallery, Whittier College, March, 2012
As part of the series, "Liquid Gold-Black Gold, the Golden Age of Whaling”, the March exhibition considered The Greenleaf Gallery’s adjacent hall of portraits, featuring the school’s former presidents and founders, as an extension of the show. Within Hoffman’s exhibition, along with her portraits of escaped slaves turned abolitionists, such as Frederick Douglass and Ellen Craft, the show also included a work by the College’s namesake, the poet and abolitionist, John Greenleaf Whittier. Written into the painting, "Walker's Hand", Whittier’s poem “The Branded Hand” was originally written in tribute to the Captain Johnathan Walker, a whaler and abolitionist whose hand was branded with the letters “S.S”, marking him as a slave stealer.