a polite request…

To all my much appreciated followers and supporters of the work towards expressing and articulating patient the lived experience of illness through art. This is an unusual thing for me to do and I hope that you will understand the reasons. So…here goes!

Artes Mundi is an internationally focused arts organisation that identifies, recognises and supports contemporary visual artists who engage with the human condition, social reality and lived experience.

Founded in 2002 by Welsh artist William Wilkins, Artes Mundi is best known for its biennial international Exhibition and Prize which takes place in Cardiff. The exhibition is Wales’ biggest and most exciting contemporary visual art show. One of the shortlisted artists is awarded the prize of £40,000, the largest art prize in the UK and one of the most significant in the world.

Here is my respectful request:

Artists must be nominated for the prize and for Artes Mundi 8 all nominations must be submitted by 17:00 GMT on 15th May 2017. I am hoping that someone may able to nominate me for the work that I do. It goes without saying I think that were I to be shortlisted it would be excellent in terms of getting my work seen more and thus help the cause and indeed, were I to actually win the prize money would be of huge advantage in continuing and expanding the scope of my work.

If you feel you can help please follow this link to nominate me:

http://www.artesmundi.org/en/news/artesmundi8nominations

With grateful thanks

Jac

New NYC Exhibition update!

I’m delighted to let you know that the Drawing Out Obstetric Fistula exhibition is continuing its run in New York and, sponsored by the Kupona Foundation, has moved to the acclaimed Cornelia Street cafe in Greenwich Village.

The exhibition will run from February 28th – May 2nd 2017. More details can be found here:

Cornelia Street Cafe art

All of the work on show at the Cafe is for sale with the proceeds going directly to women suffering from obstetric fistula in Tanzania. For more information click on the link below or contact kupona.art@gmail.com.

http://www.artpal.com/KUPONAART

NYC exhibition update

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The Drawing Out Obstetric Fistula exhibition at the Kimmel Galleries in NYC has been extended through December this year! I am delighted of course and this is great news as it will allow the exhibition to reach a bigger audience and continue the good work in raising awareness and increasing understanding of the experience of fistula. The reaction to the show up to now has been really encouraging…below is a comment on progress from sponsors and organisers, the Kupona Foundation.

To see a slide show of the work in the exhibition check out the dedicated page on this site.

So far, the exhibition has raised over $26,000 in support and sponsorship as we fight to end fistula within a generation. It has also triggered multiple conversations with potential new partners. Our Twitter chat the day of the launch made over 3 million impressions, and our efforts to publicize the exhibition continue. We have been thrilled by the response, and are so grateful for support from the artist, Jac Saorsa, and our sponsors Johnson & Johnson, Fistula Foundation, the UNFPA-led Campaign to End Fistula and New York University’s Kimmel Center and College of Global Public Health.

New York Exhibition open!

The Drawing Out Obstetric Fistula 2016 exhibition is now open!

I am in New York, the work is hung, and I am preparing for the launch night – it kicks off at 7pm tonight and we are looking forward to a great evening. Being back in the city is strange for me as it harbours  many memories. I lived here while studying at the New York Academy…  it has been an emotional few days for very many reasons and on very many levels.

I will post images of the whole show, and of tonight’s event, once I get back to the UK…in the meantime here is a ‘teaser shot’ shot of part of the show on the wall at the Kimmel gallery.

My grateful thanks to everyone who has worked so hard to help me realise this exhibition

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Beautiful day; beautiful people

Cleaning the screen

Cleaning the screen

Another successful day at the Mabinti Centre in dar es Salaam. This is the start of my second and last week working with the women there and this week’s group were just as enthusiastic and engaged with the creative work as were the first group. Colour theory was new and fascinating to them and the colour wheel, a magic thing! The womens’ sense of design seems innate and they were making beautiful and complex patterns on a basic framework consisting of six lines and 5 circles. We went on to talk about hot (johto) colours and cold (baridi) colours. Swahili and English got all mixed up with laughter and a truly healthy competitive spirit when we started to play a ‘colour game’ with a whole assortment of tiny textile paint bottles!

After a hearty lunch of rice and beans and Tanzanian spinach I continued to sketch and take photographs of the site and of the people working there. As I sat in the cool shade of the banda, quietly sketching the women as they went about washing up the plastic boxes they ate their food from, and cutting cloth in the outside work space, I felt I was in a place where things – lives – change.

A trip to the supermarket in the early evening was an equally moving experience. I walked  with new found and very wonderful friends, who hail from Denmark, and  they led me through the ‘local neighborhood’ here in Mikocheni. My artist self was intoxicated by the richness and the authenticity of everything that was around me – the people, the smells, the colours, the smiles, the narrowness of the dirt streets (that I have to admit did encroach on my closely guarded sense of  claustrophobia!) and the incredibly stark juxtaposition of the barefoot scraps of humanity who were playing, as children will, in the heat and the dust, and their impeccably clad elder siblings coming home from school in distinctive and immaculate uniforms. Chickens run to and fro in the neighbourhood, many, many  people  sit, chat to friends, or simply watch the world go by outside small, dark houses or bars. They work on cars, motorbikes, bajaji, they sell their fruit, vegetables, clothes or jewellery, they just, simply ..live their lives. We heard “Hallo! How are you?” at every turn. The children repeat it endlessly until we respond and then reply back to us with enormous smiles. “Welcome!” (Karibu) rings in your ears always here in Dar and we heard it no less infrequently here n the nieghbourhood. This was an experience burnt into my memory…. my thanks to Eva and Claus.

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Washing dishes after lunch

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Outside workspace