24 July 2015

An Apple a Day: exploring health through art

An Apple a Day: Saturday. Phoebe Ann Erb.

Recently, DH and I enjoyed a local art exhibit with the engaging title of Healthful.   Eighteen artists, all affiliated with the community arts organization Unbound Visual Arts, explored the theme of physical and mental well-being in various media, including, but not limited to, painting, quilts, and photography.

The exhibit was curated by John Quatrale.

My friend Phoebe Ann Erb presented a series of collages celebrating the folk wisdom of eating an apple a day, but with a twist - on Sunday, just rest under an apple tree! It's a palatable message (pun intended) as portrayed by Phoebe's seven engaging collages, in which she melds her gouache painting with vintage fabrics and paper.

A collage a day...work by Phoebe Ann Erb.

The work below, by Ruth Rieffanaugh, offers advice even more directly. The density of the text is reminiscent of those package inserts which accompany medications, but the warmth of the wood and informal quality of the lettering suggests the inner monologue of someone confronted with, but not conquered by, illness or other challenges.  One of my favorite lines in this work: "You can become off balance seeking stability."

Musings, Ruth Rieffanaugh.

Musings, detail.

The fascinating pen drawings in the image above were begun by Dianne (Iyan) Freeman while she recuperated from surgery.  Beauty can rise from the most unpromising of circumstances.

Reflection, a Self-Portrait, Dianne (Iyan) Freeman.

I Have Hip Dysplasia, Grace Luk.

Humor was in evidence too. We are all familiar with the Snellen eye chart; a standard, reliable method of measuring visual acuity.  In the digital print above, artist Grace Luk uses the familiar chart to communicate information about another condition which may not be so easily "seen."

Seattle Garlic Cluster, Francis Gardino.

Since this blog began with an apple, why not end with another food associated with a healthy diet and good nutrition?  Garlic was historically used both as a food and a medicine, and the plump bulbs in the photograph above, glowing in their purple net packaging, look ready for the kitchen.