David, Holly, and Candace

A family of three stand in front of a dark wooden garden shed with white panelling on a concrete patio. A man in a University of Kentucky shirt leans on an open door, a woman in a long black cardigan and jeans is to his left. A young woman with long hair parted on her left shoulder drinks from a can in the background.

Holly Hughes is the English Language Learner Teacher at Mary Todd Elementary School.

David Mato is the Instructional Media Teacher at Maxwell Spanish Immersion Elementary School.

A native of Spain, David was scheduled to become a U.S. citizen on March 20. Because of COVID-19, the ceremony didn’t happen. Trips that had been planned for a while also aren’t happening. And even though they are all social people, it’s been really nice to slow down and take it easy.

Their shed used to be a party shed. Now it’s their oasis.

Audio Transcript

This is Holly. I’ve lived in Lexington for 35 years.

I want to live in an America that collectively supports what we call the American ideals. Not just the convenient ones. ALL of the ideals. And not just for some of us, but for ALL of us. Justice. Equality. Representation. Rule of law. Separation of powers. Civil discourse. Freedom. Opportunity. Democracy. And, yes, even patriotism.

As a country, we shouldn’t pick and choose. We should discuss, debate, and refine, but we shouldn’t kid ourselves into thinking that it’s ok to give up on any of these ideals.

This American experiment is still new. I want to live in an America that proves the hypothesis, a country that upholds these ideals and fulfills its promise. One nation, indivisible, with liberty and justice, for all.

Lexington in the Time of COVID-19 is an artwork about people practicing social distancing at a time of a deadly virus. And also offering kindness.

Kurt Gohde and Kremena Todorova capture photographs at the periphery of American culture, where drag queens, discarded couches, and abandoned motel signs exist.