Royal Brompton Hospital, London hosts Holding Time, a multi media exhibition by Lisa Creagh from April 15th--June 15th 2018 where it will be display a series of breastfeeding portraits, along with interviews with participating mothers and a newly created animation with music by Helen Anahita Wilson.
Holding Time is an exhibition about Motherhood and Time. Featuring portraits of twenty three mothers created over a period of nearly three years, this groundbreaking work is an attempt to capture the experience of breastfeeding from a mothers point of view. With an animation , still images and interviews, this is a celebration of breastfeeding that will encourage debate.
Despite accumulated evidence of the physical, emotional and mental health benefits to the child, as well as the environmental and social benefits, in a society preoccupied with economic growth the time saving arguments in favour of bottle-feeding remain a major obstacle to higher rates of breastfeeding.
Each mother is accompanied by a digitally created 'Timepiece' of Creagh's invention. This 'right-brained clock' is based on an ancient Cosmatesque design, found on the floor of the Sistine Chapel. By contextualising breastfeeding mothers within this older decorative tradition, Creagh shows time spent breastfeeding as slower, deeper and fuller than 'normal' time.
The range of mothers is deliberately broad in scope. Mothers range in age from early twenties to mid forties, with children aged from a few weeks to up to three and a half. There are tandem feeding mothers (mothers feeding two children simultaneously), single mothers and mothers of sick children. All are shot in the same way: against a neutral dark background in lighting reminiscent of Renaissance paintings.
Along with podcasts from The Parlour, there will be interviews with staff about the breastfeeding support mothers receive when their children are critically ill in the hospital. See below Niamb and Elizabeth.
Also Adonia: mother of a critically ill child who has received the support and care of staff at the Royal Brompton.
Some participating mothers (pictured) include;
Sarina Byrne: Sabrina is the mother of Isabelle, a child born with Cystic Fibrosis was the subject of a commission from rb&hArts for a portrait of a mother of a hospital patient for their
expressing room. Jenna Hoyte: Jenna has breastfed three children and is pictured with her third child Leo. Bethania Mathaeus is a Brazilian resident of Brighton, pictured with her daughter Luna. Ivy Lourenco is a Chinese resident of Brighton, pictured with her son Sebastian.
Holding Time is a project aiming to create a different new language for breastfeeding, and in this way challenge the cultural stigmas surrounding breastfeeding. Combining a broad program of documentation and discussion, it is a political intervention, both real and virtual. We aim to empower women to share their stories and images, and open up a real and virtual space for breastfeeding mothers through education, art, discussion and research.
In Conversation: Lisa Creagh and Lucila Newell talk about Motherhood, Breastfeeding and Time at the ONCA Gallery exhibition