The idea behind my sketchbook Thoughts on Motherhood was to revisit an old line of artistic expression as a means to see where the topic may be headed in the future. In past works, my explorations on the theme of motherhood have centred around cable-knit sweaters made of unwearable materials – cement, glass, wax, matted dog hair. There is a harshness to these materials, one which carries over to the type of mother who would wear such items. The sweaters speak to expectations and disappointments I’ve felt in my relationship with my mother and those related to being a mother myself. They have helped me look at how my mother’s mute acceptance of her difficult marriage effected not just herself but all her children as well. As the sketchbook progressed, I thought about how my own choices, as different as they may be from my mother’s, have shaped the relationship I have with my own family. I realized it is time to create my own sweater. Mine is a cardigan. At first it meant loss, but now it also means new understandings and some unexpected joy.
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