With Me, Without Me
In our society we currently view disability as either a sign of immense strength and something to be admired, or as something used as an excuse to scrounge off the state. It is rarely viewed as something that is part of normal family life.
With Me, Without Me is a series that examines how disability becomes accepted by the family. It becomes invisible to those who love the disabled person. Despite this it is still a barrier to the disabled/ill person. The wheelchair is wrapped in cling film to show how suffocating illness/disability can be and to represent how the many layers of disabled experience (clinical settings, physical barriers, etc) can lead to the disabled person becoming, or feeling invisible; despite the perceived normalcy of the situation by loved ones. This dual “invisibility” reflecting both positive and negative emotions is symbolised by transparent nature of the cling film.
To achieve the ends of the project I am taking my old wheelchair with us to various settings where it will be placed among the family and wrapped with clingfilm . The shots will take the form of naturalistic “snapshots” where no staging (apart from the wrapped wheelchair) will take place and staged shots where the wheelchair replaces me in the typical “family photo”.
Snapshot, (Selected for SHAPE ARTS OPEN 2013)
Family Photo (2013)
Two Faces of Disability (2013)
Chillin’ in the Garden (2013)