Within each new series of work, there is a story.
My practice is concern with identity, in particular stolen identity.
Our identity is what makes us who we are and helps shapes the decisions we make as humans. What does it mean for us to have ownership over our own identity taken away?
Within this series of work, I focus on the Alzheimer's disease. This journey started in 2016, with being selected by ARTzheimer's as one of twenty artists, commissioned from around Ireland to make a piece of art about The Alzheimer's disease for a permanent exhibition.
I began by visiting and still continue to visit a local hospital, meeting with patients, family members and staff. This offers me insight into the daily life of people with dementia and their families.
I realise how important the sense of touch can be in stimulating individuals: when memories and stories may begin to fade and blur it seemed to me that the physical sensation of a gesture or an embrace could grant patients some relief, some sense of solidarity, of understanding. A lasting connection between patients of this disease and their loved ones.
Though the meaning of the gesture perhaps holding different meanings for both patients and loved ones, the power of touch still may appear to provoke a loving reaction - if only for a moment.
The years before my grandmother passed away I witnessed a glimpse of what dementia was. It was difficult to watch as this incredible person in my life slowly became helpless and frustrated as her body and mind seemed to leave her. My family pulled together and did their best to care for her and keep her at home. However, it takes a toll to see this happen to a loved one, knowing that it will only progress until the person she was is gone.
When I came across ARTzheimer’s and their mission, I knew it was important to apply. To me, the most important role an artist can take is one providing a platform to open conversations about our current affairs and values as a society and start questioning the now rather than the what if. Bringing any issues out in the open encourages the ability for change to start taking place.