The engagement and feedback from the visitors to this exhibition – especially to my coffin (which I’m in no hurry to use!) – is humbling, so many photos have been taken and conversations started.
Here’s the foreword, for context:
As the song goes… let’s enjoy it while we can, on the bright side of the road (Van Morrison)
It was brought home to me how quickly and effectively everything you hold dear can be taken away. At the moment I thought was my last, I sent up just one prayer ‘look after my family’. I believe my prayer was granted and God reckoned I was the one for the job; I walked away without even a bruise. Eight months later, my brother was taken out of his home in a wooden box. A box that in no way reflected his personality or the life he lived. For me, seeing his jacket thrown in the ground touched me more than seeing the traditional box lowered.
These events prompted me to create my own ’wooden bed’, as my husband calls it, along with these pieces on the wall. My aim was to create something that reflects my life and values, including my love of painting, and layer everything into a canvas of memories and comforts.
Back when I used to interview people for positions as part of my job, I found that for me their personalities and motivations were best outlined by the choices they made and what they based those choices on. It amazed me how a seemingly small, common place, decision made one day could impact the direction of a life.
I believe the one thing we have control over in this life are our thoughts, and our thoughts inform our choices, and even if we can’t control the events around us we can choose how we react to them – the choice is ours.
Exhibition runs to 11th August as part of Birr Vintage Week and Arts Festival