The exhibition is next month. It is coming ever closer and I think I have enough paintings to show. I still have moments of doubt that maybe I have misjudged the effect my story will have on people. I think I fear that people will look at Steve at his most vulnerable and say Good God, that is Awful and not think of his humanity and the bravery he showed.
However, I am determined to show these paintings. They are more than paintings though. They are a window into how cancer affects those at the end of their lives. I have painted Steve, but others look at the images and see their fathers, their grandparents, their loved ones each of whom looked as thin and ill as Steve at that stage of his journey. It makes us remember. This weekend I had up to 20 people staying for various family birthdays, and I found some of my guests sitting in the studio here talking together of how the paintings reminded them of the last days of various people that had died, and the part they had played in their final moments. It touches everyone with a story to tell.
So onto practical matters. I have more invites and press releases to send out. I have to interest the local radio and to interest some local businesses in donating items for the opening night. St Barnabas House Hospice is supporting me so wonderfully in this exhibition, I am very grateful as it is an awful lot for one person to do. I hope all of you can donate to the Just Giving page I have set up to raise money for them. They are the hospice that danced Steve out of this life, and gave me such support when I needed it. Take a look, www.justgiving.com/agracefuldeath .
I am happy to take this exhibition wherever it can go. So far, I have venues in Worthing, Birmingham and Germany. If you can offer a space for the exhibition in your area please email me on firstname.lastname@example.org. The exhibition is raising funds for St Barnabas House Hospice, but is also raising awareness of End of Life and Palliative Care generally. The exhibition aims to grow with each showing, including more and more of your stories and poems and thoughts.
A reminder that the opening night is Monday 7 December, 6pm - 8pm. Please come and support, and the exhibition is open for the whole of the week following, until 13 December. Entrance is free, and the times will be probably 10am to 4pm. The venue, just to remind you, is the Friends Meeting House, Priory Road, Chichester, PO19 1NX.
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