Thursday, January 13, 2011

Waxes from forever ago!

The waxes I promised in the May 29th 2009 entry... Still incomplete…

Despite his dystrophy, his imagination would not atrophy. This is my favorite out of this bunch. It’s the most positive and it was fun to make. I have a lot of fond memories of the boy this piece is about. When I met him, he walked with leg braces. As time went on crutches were added, and then a manual wheelchair for when he was too tired. The last time I saw him, he was in a power chair full time. Always, despite this gradual decline, he was creative, playful and hopeful. He was Godzilla to imagined cities, we watched piranha fights in the pool, and we told jokes all the time.

He lies with his eyes but his smile always tells the truth.
                                                                                        This is about a man I worked with who had
quadriplegia and used his eyes to signal yes and no to asked questions. After working with him for some time, I realized that he often lied when he was tired of being misunderstood or felt like he was being a burden. Smiling however is an interesting function. He cannot control his mouth to eat or speak but smiling is an involuntary action. I made it my goal to make him laugh and smile as many times possible during our time together.

They had to sew his face back on; He can’t stop drawing yellow buses;
 I made this after working with a very small boy who had been hit, along with his brother, by a school bus while riding on the handle bars of a bicycle. He was basically catatonic for weeks after the accident, until an art therapist brought him art supplies. I never heard him speak, but the in depth drawings of the grill of a yellow bus were such strong images I often left the sessions almost in tears. The art really helped to start bringing him back to a functioning state. I think I made this piece mostly for myself to try to cope with the hugely powerful intensity of the situation.            Thanks to shitty health care policies, he was discharged as soon as he could walk again. I wonder about him sometimes.