Art after Loss – Online Gallery
Art can support wellbeing after loss
This gallery is a safe place for anyone, from professional artists to adults or children who have never consider themselves to be artists, to share their expression of loss through art. The art shared here might be a drawing or painting, a photograph or poem, collage, fabric creation or a link to a song. Any medium of art is welcome.
Everyone experiences bereavement and loss and each individual will feel different. In addition, some people want support with bereavement and others choose to grieve privately. After loss, you may experience a wide variety of emotions, which may change over time and can often be very conflicting and challenging.
As part of our commitment to supporting wellbeing, we can help share resources about bereavement support and you are welcome to attend our bereavement support group, if you think that it might be helpful to listen and talk in a peer-support session. However, many people that we have supported have told us that they have found different ways to express their emotions, share their feelings and have used creativity to help support their wellbeing after loss.
With this in mind, we have created this online art gallery to celebrate and share some of the beautiful and meaningful ways that people have used art to help them after a loss or bereavement. We hope that this provides a platform for people to share their art, and that it may inspire others to use art to support them after loss or bereavement.
If you would like you art to be displayed on the online gallery then please do get in touch. If you would be happy to share some brief information about your art work then that would be really helpful.
My dad passed away in January and was cared for by Full circle funerals… he had a passion for art and we would often walk around the Tate galleries in St Ives Cornwall, on our yearly holidays, making memories spending “Daddy and daughter time” together as he used to say… He taught me how to sew after starting his career in upholstery and therefore one of my final promises to him was that I would find my passion again and make something from a pattern… little did we know that this would span into me starting my own small business in his legacy. I also created this little resin piece out of his funeral flowers which we like to look at as his “tree of life” with the way some of the flowers have floated towards the top! Creating has really helped me in my grief, especially knowing that its a trait I have got from my dad 💖
The poem came several months after Chris died. It really summed up his absence in those sleeping hours at night. The images are from my making use of the the beautiful flowers we received from friends and family at that time. I was ‘laying them out’ to make a botanical print. However the process didn’t turn out as expected, as can often be the case with natural dyeing. Yet something unexpected and interesting did come out of it. It was illuminating and appeared otherworldly. What better metaphor for grief.
Diane has an Exhibition Installation – ‘Garden of Lost and Found’ opening on 7pm Tuesday 7th September 2021 at Left Bank, Cardigan Road, Leeds, LS6 1LJ
These dream catchers were created as part of the “Mindfulness for Loss” day at Rossmoor Park by members of the public. The idea was to create something that could capture the emotions that arise in different parts of us when affected by grief and loss. Sometimes these feelings may be contradictory emotions, but this art project was created to help recognise that this is normal and absolutely ok, and also to highlight the sense of not always being alone in grief, and the potential for connection through shared experience. This workshop was facilitated by Liz Calvert counselling and psychotherapy and creative Earth education.
Mindful Memorials https://mindfulmemorials.co.uk/
After the death of my wife, Joy, I kept (and continue to keep) a daily doodle diary that charted my journey through the grieving process. I found that drawing what I was feeling helped me to work through the emotions and it became a form of ’self counselling’. She remains close to me through the drawings, as I often imagine her reactions to certain events and include her in the image.
Gary Andrews www.GaryScribbler.co.uk
Coronavirus, Lockdown and loss. This last year has been extremely difficult for everyone across the world grieving their own losses or comforting those who have lost. This painting was done as a symbol of ‘The Circle of Life’ and when someone or something dies new life has been given else where and is nature’s way of taking and giving back life to earth. It symbolizes the universe being sacred and divine.
Kirsty Bowe www.inkandartstudio.co.uk
I wrote this poem to deal with my grief when my Mom passed. It tells the story of me returning back to the house when the funeral and wake is over and it’s just me. I knew the house would be empty, but for some reason I expected there to be the smell of food in the kitchen or my mom to still be in her PJ’s watching movies far too late into the afternoon. But in the silence I realise that I have no regrets, I gave all my love to my Mom while I could and I left nothing in that house behind.
Joel Duncan https://www.facebook.com/joelduncanwriter
Following the funeral of my Grandad, I took one of the white roses out of the coffin display and took this photo as I knew, unlike the flower itself, the photo would last forever.
I wrote this whilst on a flight to Croatia in May 2019, a few months after a very good friend lost their mum very suddenly. These were my reflections based on conversations we shared over many hours.
For me, Lisa’s photograph doesn’t need any words. The heart shaped hole in ourselves says everything.
Bea’s Nain (Welsh grandma) died before she was born. Because we still talk about her a lot (and cook recipes written in her handwriting all the time), Bea feels a strong connection to her.
In this picture Bea shares how she feels about her grandma.
Beatrice aged 8
During a time when I was going through a deep loss, I came across this statue on a very dark & atmospheric day.
The mood of the woman looking out awaiting someone’s return, along with the location and storm clouds really resonated with me. Luckily, I had my camera with me and was able to capture it all.
This mosaic was made in response to the death of Emma Liddle, who died suddenly at the age of 39 leaving a husband and two small children. It was commissioned by her friends and family who went to considerable lengths to find items for inclusion that were relevant to Emma’s life. The items include buttons from her favourite coat, a toy shark to represent her love of the film Jaws, broken orange pottery because she had a fondness for Iron Bru, red things to stand for her support for the Labour Party, dried heather from Aberdeenshire where she was born and brought up, a coin from the year of her birth and parts of a toy played with by her sons.
Helen Miles https://helenmilesmosaics.org/
I’d love to share a piece I did for my sister, Amy. She died when she was 10 and was buried with her half of our friendship necklace that was placed around her favourite teddy bear. When I moved in with my partner I wanted to create a memorial wall in our home to remember our loved ones.
I now offer to create unique hand-painted memorial artwork, turning feelings and memories into personal designs.
Ruth Davies www.spiritual-designs.com
Whether it be the loss of a family member or a beloved pet, a lock of hair or ashes keepsake can bring some comfort that there is a part of them still with you. These can be discreet pieces, so only you know what the piece conceals, or they can be on show. I did my first piece for a friend of mine who lost their horse.