Throughout this project I’ve been making animations – using the photographs that patients send me to make drawings and then making those drawings into animations. But I’ve also been making stand alone drawings, little chapters of life in a single room on Foulis. They often remind me of still life painting – this is one from a picture Lauren sent me – the stacks of extra food are a theme that pops up again and again in patients’ photos. Here I’ve drawn Lauren’s stack of extra food in biro – but it could almost be like a 17th Century collection of precious foods you see in old paintings. The oranges are still there but instead of lobster there’s Pringles…
Claire sent me pictures of the doll’s house she made and put in her window during her stay on the ward. I imagined it as a parallel for the individual rooms patients inhabit with no face to face contact with their neighbours due to the cross-infection rules that mean they communicate only by virtual means – here that’s by a message read in a book, a letter in a bottle and a message on a paper aeroplane.
The doll’s house aspect reflects the way each room becomes a small world in itself, with the sea a metaphor for distance between. At the end the inhabitant flying away is both a daydream of escape and the feeling of joy when you know that you’re going home.
Watch the video here