I am currently making a series of photo media works for the artist-run Epicormia exhibition titled Unraveling. A series of large format self-portraits with a bandaged head partially masking my face, bandages inscribed with text. For me it is a literal interpretation of my mild traumatic brain injury, the difficulty in processing words/conversation. Constant new images and ideas render my brain fatigued after minutes, this still happens daily, nine years after my motor vehicle accident.
For the last nine years I have been in incubation, hibernation, my brain slowly healing. I had to leave the outside world, its activities and isolate at home, with my cat Oscar. Home, where I have no unannounced visitors, unnecessary sounds and sleep18 hours a day. I make little ventures outside to gather food and necessities for survival. These visits slowly increased with time and my ability to cope with outside activity such as people talking, traffic, movement, daylight became slowly, snail paced, are becoming more doable.
After the motor vehicle accident, I looked and talked the same as before the accident, yet, I was not the “same”, words were indeed s/words. Communication break down and people not believing I had a problem meant that in turn friend walked away, this followed with isolation, with depression.
This year marks my entry back into the outside world, engaging, unraveling. I have been once again working on visual arts projects and within the community. Its not the same or will it ever be, as before. But I do see my unraveling as golden, epicormic within this egg, my disability in a sense has been my initiation and incubation into adulthood.
Having had time out from the “real world”; reflecting, I do see it with very different eyes now, I was part of it and I knew that world well….but I am not sure I want to take the same path again as before, in a world that is driven by white colonial practices, every system we have in place now socially echoes an antiquated and outdated heritage, it’s time for change…..
Marion Conrow, September 2016