Mon Frère is an installation that confronts the viewer with Irene Reece’s brother Froncell in his day-to-day. Irene Reece is attempting to render a double consciousness of sorts; how the world sees Froncell and how he sees the world. The bigger issue within this body of work concerns the caregivers of this population. The parents, siblings, relatives, and friends of children and adults with special needs face daily challenges. The inevitably they will have to face of who will take care of their children when they are no longer here.
Irene Antonia Diane Reece is Houston, TX based artist working primarily in photography, documentary-style film, and painting. The issues that inform my work revolves around racial identity, family histories, mental and community health issues. Her brother, Froncell Juan Reece, is a 24-year-old man diagnosed as autistic, with moderate cerebral palsy and severe echolalia. Froncell has a constant routine that he follows every day. Irene and her sister Nancy (Froncell’s twin) are part of that routine. So are her parents. Growing up Irene came to understand that her brother’s mind was pure, innocent, undeterred and unaware of the daily happenings of the world. Yet Froncell understands he is different. Different in appearance, different in temperament, different in his use of language and different in how he processes things.