Silene Viscaria (sticky catchfly)
If you do only one thing today, Take a Look at This Heart.
The film, by Ben Duffy and Dan Garcia, delves into the world of love and sexuality within the disabled community. I hope it smashes every misconception about differently-abled bodies and what they're good for.
You might already know this means a lot to me... my housemate, Shawn, is spastic-tetraplegic from cerebral palsy.
Yet he is the only human I know who has biked from Ottawa to his hometown of Goderich, Ontario. Definitely the only one who pedaled that whole way with his arms. And then had his own day conferred upon him by the town's mayor (it's May 20, and you're all invited to come over). And then returned the favour by convincing the mayor to dump a bucketful of ice on his own head.
Always the first to join me by the fire and the last to leave.
Always offering to accompany the kids to school, or bring in the groceries, or shovel the walk, or harrass an unethical company that has failed to deliver on its promises to me.
Always grateful, always bitingly humorous, always hoping to never hurt anyone, ever.
I digress. This isn't his story; it's everyone's who lives without full control of their motor abilities. They're hard to listen to; hard to look at.
Every single one of us. Be honest with yourself: you've been disabled in some way at some point of your life; and if you haven't yet, you will; and you wish never to be.
Does this make you less able to, or less deserving of, love?
I stumbled across Ben Duffy on Instagram -- something to do with liking humanitarian work and skateboarding. The guy ditched everything to make this film, and from what I've seen, it is GOOD. I want it, and him, to succeed; so I'm pitching in what I can.
When I asked Ben about a subject for my painting, he surrendered creative control to me. I finally found the perfect symbol: Silene Viscaria, or sticky catchflower. Found growing in difficult, rocky terrain, this pink-budded stem was historically offered as an invitation to dance. Those who accept the invitation find it confers a strengthening, disease-fighting benefit to others.
Plus, it's heart-shaped. Perfect, right?
To help me say thank-you.
Graphite, moulding paste & gesso
Matte clear shield with UV protection