Thursday, November 27, 2008

Navigating Loss

Seattle based artist, Monika Lidman explores her experiences in process of losing of her father in her series 'Navigating Loss'. For the full series, visit

"My earliest memories involve swimming with my father. In this series, ship flags, used to warn other vessels about navigating conditions, provide a metaphor for intergenerational communication at the end of life.

For ten years, I have been painfully aware of my father’s decline. While some held out for the promise of returning health, I did not allow myself that particular luxury that denial affords.

I wanted to stay grateful, keenly aware of this phase of his journey, believing, however erroneously, that my attention and observations would somehow ease, or better prepare me for his inevitable departure.

It was perfectly clear that this last stage of the voyage was lacking in maps and tools for navigation, yet my parents provided an excellent model of grace and patience – with one another as well as with their situation.

In the end, I am no better prepared for death than most. I can say that careful observation and staying very present have provided both insight and a gift.
-Monika Lidman

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