This piece was created for the Hooge clan (my extended family). For the pain, trials and trauma so many of us have experienced this year. Some have been smaller (but not insignificant), some incredibly scary, perhaps some unshared, yet we all have been touched and have had to come together to support each other.
To me the Hellebore, also known as the Christmas Rose, offers hope. They are one of the few flowers that bloom in Winter, a cold, rather bleak season. Rather than hibernating and avoiding the unfavourable conditions, the Hellebores push through and blossom despite the unwelcoming weather. For me they show that there is still life and therefore hope around us even if it is dormant and hidden, it can bloom even in the bleakest season we are experiencing.
During the making process, the paper got ripped. Rather than discard it, as I found I was rather attached to the piece and how much work I had already put into it, I decided to draw inspiration from an ancient Japenese art form of fixing broken pottery, called Kintsukori meaning "golden repair". In this practise the Japanese use laquer mixed with gold to visibly repair the broken pottery. In this way it embraces its imperfections and celebrates its history. I thought I could incorporate the idea and be reminded that our mends have made us stronger and become a beautiful part of who we are.
My reference photo for this piece was taken at Oma and Opa's farm in December. It is a place of so many memories, of so much coming together, so many celebrations, so much good food. It has also been a place of experimentation, research, learning, and adaptation. For me it has grown into a place of refuge, of comfort, support, and hope.
So for each of us, whether we have been the person suffering or walking alongside, I created this piece as a reminder of the hope we have all clung to and that has held us together.