Saturday, 5 August 2017

I'm currently reframing my art practice.

As I see it, before my diagnosis I was trying to be the person everyone else wanted me to be so if I wasn't being my true self then it appears that my theoretical framework and indeed my art were also an effort to please.

So here I am now, five years post diagnosis, enjoying textiles and the odd bit of drawing wondering how to develop it further. The old rusty framework is still there but a new set of values and influences need to be darned in. As I can't get out much most of my viewing of others work comes via books, the internet, and handling old textiles that I've collected. It's the theoretical stuff I'm getting into at the moment.

I hadn't thought much about the difficulties I was having until a friend said to me that I was experiencing disablement. I found a gem of a book, 'Why are you pretending to be normal' by Phil Friend and Dave Rees that is about the language we use. This is not an academic book, it's not meant to be. It is a widely accessible for most readers. I'm in the process of taking what it suggests on board. In the meantime I've started to ponder how much the sensory impairments I have impact on my art/craft practice. I'm dipping into texts on phenomenology, postmodernism, poststructualism, feminism and disability theory...and it's making sense!

It's important to me to understand why I do what I do so these new developments are exciting.

Bye for now :)



Thursday, 3 August 2017

The other day Lovely Husband and I had a meeting with a care team of a relative in hospital. As a person on the autism spectrum hospitals are a sensory nightmare especially with the lights and noise. Through the love and generosity of a relative I've been gifted noise cancelling headphones. We entered the hospital and within a minute I'd donned my headphones and made our way to the ward. The meeting began with two staff members - an occupational therapist and physiotherapist - and I felt fine and included. Actually, at that point inclusion wasn't even contemplated. Another physiotherapist then joined us, I smiled and greeted him, he looked at me with some expression I could not read and then proceeded to conduct his whole conversation to my husband with no eye contact with me. I wondered if I should explain myself and then thought why should I have to? I let him continue uninterrupted. Towards the end of his speech, and where polite to do, I interceded with an intelligent comment and he looked at me with complete surprise as if in amazement that I could think such thoughts.

I'm still struggling to process this 'thing' that happened.

I haven't posted on my blog for ages, to be honest it all became too much as I tried to come to terms with my autism and the anxiety and depression that follows a state of overwhelm. My husband suggested I use my blog to air my thoughts so here I am. And I'll be back.

Ignoring these situations doesn't promote the education of the ignorant. Perhaps after the meeting the male staff member had a light bulb moment and feels bad about his behaviour. I don't want him to feel like that, I'd just like to think he'd learnt something from it and moved on.