The title of this exhibition, Somebody’s Child, came from Birch’s reflections on the frequency of violence in our country and throughout the world. Whether playing music, dancing, resting, or posing, the people in Birch’s paintings conveyed basic human characteristics — pride, strength, tenderness, energy, uncertainty — that are universally recognizable. At the same time, he portrayed these people in a highly individualized manner and gave vital form to their specific experience as African Americans in New Orleans. In this way, Birch paid tribute to his community and cultural heritage and pointed to aspects of the human condition shared by us all. Somebody’s Child was organized by Molly Polk with Megan Hack. Special thanks to Luise Ross and Ned Puchner.