Come one, come all to the Upstairs Art Gallery, 420 Main Street in Placerville, California. I’ve got two pastels hanging in the show for several weeks. Here are photos of the pieces and the words of the narratives that accompany each picture.
Title: Healing Tree Medium: Pastel
As I drew these shapes, a stomach emerged with a tree growing up from it. This tree represents the hope I feel about completely healing from the impact of infant surgery. I am still dealing with post-traumatic stress (PTS) from the operation. When I made this pastel, I had just learned that it is likely that I hadn’t been anesthetized before the surgery; instead, I was given a muscle paralyzer to keep me still during the procedure. In the 1950s, the medical profession believed that babies didn’t feel pain and that anesthesia could seriously harm a baby. See my blog for more information about this, PTSD, and the process of healing from trauma: http://myincision.wordpress.com
Title: Moon Shell Medium: Pastel
I made this pastel after finishing my memoir manuscript, The Autobiography of a Sea Creature, about living in the aftermath of infant surgery without anesthesia. The image is very calm, centered and peaceful. When I began the book, the series of pictures that I pastelled were filled with chaos, pain, and confusion. This pastel shows how far I’d come through writing. Excavating the past helped me find balance and joy.
Here’s a photo of yours truly and “Moon Shell” taken by my friend Laci.