“Within These Walls” is a project conceived due to distress and the desire to break away from the many years of working in a nursing home. Never the less, I continued to work on defining its true purpose and meaning. Learn that this project is more than just having the desire to move-on from healthcare; it is about the many lives affected by terminal illness, needing 24-hour care, and having no one to care for them. This project is about the probable affliction of isolation on an individual living in a nursing home. Illness is brought on by this isolation, isolation from friends and loved ones. In fact, about 43% of the adults reported feeling lonely some of the time. Research further indicates seniors feeling lonely have a 59% greater risk of mental and physical decline (1). This project aims to bring awareness to these staggering numbers of aging adults that are suffering from loneliness and isolation.
My research will be based on first hand experience and additional statistical research to support my exploration of this project. I've worked in nursing homes for the past twenty years and there have been countless things that failed and surprised me. I have experienced families struggling to pay their loved one’s medical bills, emptying out their homes and selling it, too busy to visit, complex family dynamics, distant family from across the state unable to visit, and the list goes on. I aim to pull information and inspiration from these experiences.
In many cultures, the young have always taken care of the old. Unfortunately today's busy lifestyle makes it almost impossible to tend to the aging population who are dear to us. With the advancement of technology and the ever growing borderless world, one can choose to live anywhere, in turn creating jobs miles away from home and away from our aging mothers, fathers, grandparents, and everyone we hold dear. Nursing homes have been around since the early nineteen hundreds, solely designated for the elderly population after family members were unable to care for them and for those who had the financial resources to be placed in such a home. Today, nursing homes are a necessity, people are living longer with no one to take care of them and the elderly population is growing larger and larger every day.
On The Fence
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Throughout most of my life I have been witness to many life changes, I think we all do, some have been good others not so good. I’ve relocated from Panama to New York City at the age of 9, I married at age 17, I gave birth to three sons, divorced, loss of my father, and now in a desperation to complete my MFA in Photography. These life changes create a road map to who I am today. A road map that sometimes require some containment/ barriers. And, in order for my strive to continue these barrier allow me to set aside some of the less happy moments in order to continue moving forward. I’ve created fences, not full walls, fences are just tall enough to keep those inner feelings contained and room for looking in or looking back. Fences is a Fine Art linguistic-based self-portrait series aimed to explore these most inner secrets and how one is able to compartmentalize ones life. The literal subject matter will range from modern to old almost torn down fences. The scenes will be presented in a leveled way, primarily centered and isolated, in order to create an atmosphere of comfortable realignment.
Xerox image transfer using a blender pen onto cold press paper. Coated with clear bees and yellow tone wax.