“Surviving Death, Resurrecting Memories”
I had a need to create a body of work that is more a memorial to my late mother Redenta (Rita) Luchese an amazing seamstress she taught me not only skills of sewing also the idea of making as plays - we were often enlisted to help make little doll dresses as she worked for Regal Toys. She never cared much for knitting but did pass on embroidery, crocheting, and much more. In rooting through years and years of her stuff, I found some beautiful old doilies and wondered if I ever thanked her, in a way, this body of print-based work may just be doing that. In using the skills, she passed on, treasured doilies, her own threads, embroidery supplies, odds and ends combined with debossed prints this body of work not only triggered memories long thought lost, resurrected much, much more.
The reality of an end of life struggle is so horrific, the inability to help, the helpless, the failure to communicate, the fading, the failing, are the memories that haunt and are so very difficult to dissipate, causing grief to hover thick.
I was surprised to find this body of work lifted the fog, letting surface the memories that truly are meant to be kept. Now I can smile at the recollections and the work she inspired, a tad strange but even stranger, fulfilling.
The results were so satisfying I realized that my art making was mode of mourning to capture moments in the stillness and this has fuelled a series of work - Surviving Death: Resurrecting memory, with an exhibition in 2019 at the PRNT Collective, Barrie, Ontario.