Friday, 15 May 2020

Paula De Sousa, Catherine Jack, Louisa Pankhurst Johnson and Aasiri Wickremage - Art of Caring 2020

Welcome to the Art of Caring 2020. Today we introduce the work of 4 artists who have contributed work to this year's exhibition.... Paula De Sousa, Catherine Jack, Louisa Pankhurst Johnson and Aasiri Wickremage . The Art of Caring is an annual inclusive international art exhibition celebrating Nurses, Midwives, Carers, and the NHS. Thank you to the School of Nursing at Kingston University for their support.

Catherine Jack
"I was in complete awe of the nurses working around the clock to care for my boyfriend’s father after his sudden heart surgery. As we sat patiently waiting for him to wake up, the nurses were more than happy to explain to us clearly what each machine did, what medicine they were issuing, what they were managing and why. They encouraged us to write down what was happening and how we felt in a book that we could give to David when he had fully recovered, as a way for him to fill in the blanks whilst he was unconscious. It was a painstakingly slow process with both positive and negative news each day and we couldn’t predict the outcome. Through every stage of his recovery we felt acknowledged and welcomed. We never felt we were in the way or had stayed too long. The support provided was appreciated enormously and it made a huge difference to our experience."

Catherine creates paper collages using National Geographic magazines from the 1950s-1980s. Her practice explores changing contexts, providing the characters with a new home and often presenting juxtapositions. She incorporates a variety of textures to build a visually interesting piece with depth using paint and ink. Often her work is a simple combination of text with an image, as with ‘raw’ – the pure and generous act of holding someone close to you, something men are often not comfortable doing with their friends, but that is essential to our wellbeing as humans. It is important to be reminded of the power of unity during difficult times.

Paula De Sousa
To all the nurses and carers in our lives
"I see you"
Paula De Sousa is a mixed media artist working predominantly in a sgraffito style using acrylic and oil pastels on paper. After graduating from University of Chester in 1997 with a BA Hons in Art with English, Paula began a long career working with vulnerable adults. The issues of vulnerability and marginalisation have become key themes she explores in her art work, informed by both personal and professional experiences. Paula is influenced by outsider art and has a strong belief in the intrinsic creativity of each individual and healing benefits of art making. Paula lives and works in Brighton & Hove, UK.

Aasiri Wickremage 
My practice revolves around how I perceive different landscapes and spaces. I like to identify with them at an emotional level such as a personal experience and interpret it in conceptual manner in my work. I try to identify the character of each place painting intuitively through my experiences and memories, then pick out distinctive qualities that contribute in making character of the place, and emphasise them; Once finished, the painting is left for the viewers to engage, identify and explore making their own connections with the place. The variation of colours in my work to interpret the moods and ambience of each place. I believe in creating paintings that will emit positive emotions, energy and vibes to the viewer or the space that it is displayed. At an age where art is used for political conversations and topics, I believe it is just as important to give out mindful and meaningful messages as means of rediscovering the humanity and the beauty of little things around us.

My work ranges from acrylic and oil paintings on canvas to more experimental work using handmade paper from different parts of Asia.

I am a self-taught artist and has developed my work as a mindful practice. I don’t not believe in replicating work just for commercial purposes, therefore each piece is unique and personal. If I am given this opportunity I would like to explore themes of “mindfulness” “positivity” with regards to mental health using visual arts to create a dialog with the community

Louisa Pankhurst Johnson 

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