This ongoing project explores coming to terms with stigma, mental illness and trauma as a mother and artist through various mediums including cinema, literature, performance, dance, music and visual art.
In the summer of 2022, I had a singular psychotic episode. I had not experienced this before and was not sure what was happening, other than something did not feel "right". We still don't know the cause entirely, though COVID, exhaustion, stress, trauma and insomnia all likely contributed to it. I was also diagnosed with PTSD.
The prodromal phase was likely for months, but prodromes are exceedingly hard to diagnose and can only be done so after psychosis is diagnosed. This project explores the before, during and after-effects of psychosis and PTSD.
I had concurrently been working on an video art project of my own examining privilege, artistry, motherhood and social justice, so unbeknownst to myself, I documented my own prodrome and descent into psychosis. I hope to be of use to others looking to understand more about how psychosis and PTSD can present and how it affects your mind and others.
I am also interested in the close connections and mind states psychosis has in common with that of being an artist and mother--even when healthy and sane. As the project evolves, I hope to learn more about other psychiatric conditions and psychosocial disabilities, and use my platform as an artist to attempt to convey the experience and feeling of these conditions.
(Episode 1: On View By Request)
The following paintings were created as I had been researching the spiritualist movement and abstractions of Hilma Af Klint and other female abstract artists of the turn of the century. As the psychosis began to deepen, these paintings became items of premonition and deep meaning-- an interesting turn for someone who was not interested in making symbolic abstractions or surrealist work. And is an atheist.
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