Friday, 24 June 2016

Week 1

3rd March 2011 

This was the first time the group met together. We were located in the gallery for the initial session and after introductions, were paired up to draw each others' real, or imagined, birth stories. Whilst one partner vocalised the narrative, the other drew from this story. Sometimes creating illustrative drawings of what happened, at other times creating abstract marks to convey the feelings and emotions. 

Alex and Kellee

Alex and Kellee

Kellee's depiction of Alex's birth story

Kellee's imagined birth story as represented by Alex

Anna and Jenny
Jenny and Anna

Anna's imagined birth
Jenny's drawn interpretation of Anna's imagined birth story
Anna's interpretation of Jenny's birth story

Helen and Sue
Sue and Helen
Sue's drawings of Helen's birth stories

Helen's drawn representation of Sue's birth
Lisa and Lulu

Lisa and Lulu
Lulu's drawings of Lisa's birth story

Lisa's representation of Lulu's birth

PM - Collage

I collaboratively run a monthly collage night through a facebook group in Manchester and London. I decided to extend this to the work I was doing at the Whitworth. I spent a good few weeks sourcing pregnancy books both old and new which I brought in alongside some of the other books collected for collage night. We spent the afternoon session sitting around the large tables in the Worthington room cutting up these books and gluing and sticking images together.  It was fascinating to see how women were portrayed throughout the different eras; the 70s seemed to hold on to varying notions of motherhood. Sometimes sickly sweet nostalgia at other times open and honest manuals about fertility and women’s bodies. See ‘Our Bodies Ourselves’ or 'Spiritual Midwifery'. All ages had sections dedicated to getting back into shape and by the eighties yoga for pregnancy was big! See Jane Balaskas’s books. Amazingly there is echoes of the forties and fifties imagery of postpartum excercise in all.  Participants, however, had very different focuses. Lulu concentrated on the esoteric aspects, creation and the cosmos as well as the sheer pain and effort involved in birth.  Anna was more preoccupied with the connection between sex, conception and birth. 

 Anna's collage

Sue's collage

Jenny's collage
 Lulu's collage 1
 Lulu's collage 2