Well, hello, COVID. After all the care, caution and staying in, Omicron finally caught us from no idea where. After all the fear of catching this virus, considering my Inflammasome gene and my chronic health issue, I'm happy to report that I breezed through it! I was abundant with the usual energy that comes to me when social obligation falls away. In addition, the pain levels fell away as they have done with previous colds – can the brain not manage two signals or is a virus some distraction? I went with it. I got stuck into my studio!
Very chuffed to be selected as a semi finalist regardless of the outcome. The portrait was flown up to Sydney for a second round of judging. She didn't make the final cut of 30 finalists but I feel so content that Ms Soula is going to great lengths to create awareness for invisible pain.
Collage has been a little more therapeutic for me than my usual art forms. I think it must have been finding a technique that I could manage and one that didn't add to the fatigue and pain. Cutting small pieces of paper and glueing, drawing, attaching was just so light and easy. The painting of small pieces of paper and the careful ripping and tearing was like rocking. So gentle, so calming and at the same time feeling like I was handling my pain, expressing it and getting it out of my body and onto the art piece. ... Contact me if you want to purchase my artwork, these are the original pieces, no printouts will be sold. Paypal or Direct deposit available. Will post safely and securely free within Australia (plus postage outside of Australia).
In Art and Chronic Pain – A Self Portrait, artist Soula Mantalvanos shares her experience with chronic pain, which has been a debilitating presence in her life for almost seven years. Soula suffers from Pudendal Neuralgia, a painful nerve condition that developed following an accident where a fit ball that she was sitting on burst, causing her to drop violently to the concrete floor beneath. Early on in the book Soula describes that split-second, and the devastating effects that followed. A highly active yoga-loving woman before the accident, throughout the book Soula gives a deeply personal account of the psychological, emotional and physical impacts of living with chronic pain for so many years. These negative effects were compounded by the fact that her condition Pudendal Neuralgia baffled her doctors, and took four and a half years to even diagnose.