Where does a bunch of Art Therapists

working in aged care

go for a collective artist date?

Hidden exhibition

Hidden exhibition
Drops, (for Eva Hesse)
Rox de Luca

Why. To a cemetery, of course.

Hidden exhibition
The Storyteller (detail)
Teffany Thiedeman

Not just any cemetery.

Hidden Rookwood Cemetery Sculpture Walk

commemorates 150 years of ‘the Sleeping City’.

Hidden exhibition

Hidden exhibition
Mandir: Shrine
Lee FullARTon

‘HIDDEN is an outdoor sculpture exhibition that takes place amongst the gardens and graves in one of the oldest sections of the Cemetery. The exhibition invites artists to ponder the notion of history, culture, remembrance and love and allows audiences to witness creative expression hidden throughout Australia’s largest and most historic cemetery’,

Hidden art exhibition

Hidden exhibition
Meditation Forest
Peter Hardy

says the website.

Was it morbid? This art expedition to a place where members of my very own family are buried? Was it creepy? Melancholic? No. None of the above. It was actually lovely to go to Rookwood NOT for a funeral.

(The exhibition is viewable til 24th September.)

EAT.

We are a group of seven Art Therapists working in aged care. We work separately in our various nursing homes and hostels and come together periodically for mutual support. 

I think that to do the work of art therapy in aged care, particularly in a serious nursing home, you have to have an open, yet strong heart.
Not a fearless heart. I wouldn’t know what fearless is, being a Frequent Fear-er myself, but yes – an open, strong heart.

Hidden art exhibition

Hidden exhibition
One Thousand Cranes Wishes
Luke Nguyen

We call ourselves EAT. Elder Art Therapy.

And indeed we like to eat. After the art, we found a peaceful spot for a good old-fashioned cake and thermos tea party.

Hidden exhibition
The Storyteller (detail)
Teffany Thiedeman

The sculptures? A delightful range of creations, mostly on a human, accessible scale. It’s worth reading the artist statements. You get the story behind the art.

Hidden exhibition

Hidden exhibition
Meditation Forest
Peter Hardy

For example, when he was in hospital for chemotherapy, Peter Hardy’s Meditation Forest appeared as a vision of a grove of light. Once out of hospital, Peter assembled holly trees for the installation. Three goats called Boris, Benny and Ziggy contributed to the artwork by eating intricate patterns into the tree bark.

How cool is that?

Art made by human and other animals.

Altogether, it was a soulfully, artfully, heartfully, treatfully nourishing afternoon.
To me, the exhibition spoke of peacefulness, respect, sorrow and depth as well as humour, joy and life.

Hidden exhibition
Resting Place (detail)
Peacock Gallery Makers Circle

Before we say farewell until next Friday, I have just one message for you:

Hidden art exhibition

Hidden exhibition
The Pearly Gates
Jane Gillings

Beware of the God

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6 thoughts on “Where does a bunch of Art Therapists

    • Hi Gallivanta the exhibition is indeed a bold and brilliant idea. I wonder if it happens elsewhere in the world? I mean, surely places like Mexico…they have such an all-embracing approach to death and dying. It’s our culture that is starchy and disconnected.
      And no, I didn’t visit the graves on this occasion, which felt weird, but also somehow OK.

      Liked by 1 person

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