There are days when I don't know why I bother. I can’t tell you how many times my requests for gallery space, time, consideration, etc. were shoved aside. Some people get suspicious or offended, some laugh, some treat me like I'm a naive nutcase. And a lot of the requests are plain old ignored. That's the easiest part.
But. But but but. There are gracious, wonderful, openhearted people in this world who more than make up for every slammed door. I'd never have run into them if I didn’t bother. And they are so worth meeting.
Peter Soby is amazing. He gave me his old electric wheelchair and put up with my clumsy first attempts at back upholstery- which nearly pitched him off his seat. He even gave me a brilliantly simple idea for how to present Opulent Mobility.
Sophie de Oliveira Barata of the Alternate Limbs Project is so gracious. I emailed her after seeing her beautiful prostheses online. She took the time to look at my work, encourage me AND introduce me to Priscilla Sutton, who also rocks. Ms. Sutton’s exhibit “Spare Parts” takes pre-loved prosthetic limbs and turns them over to artists to re-design and re-create. Her exhibit is in Australia now. Shipping anything from there would be insane and there isn’t really time. But she’s still working with me! She’s sending images so we can create a digital slideshow of her exhibit to share at Opulent Mobility. How cool is that?
Karl Wm. Klein gave me great ideas and introduced me to Wheels For Humanity, an organization that refurbishes wheelchairs and donates them to those in need all over the world. And now they want to come and be part of the show. New Mobility Magazine, the magazine for active wheelchair users, took my basic request to post a call for art and wrote up a full article. Thank you.
Alan deForest made the Rocking Duck Boat a truly unique collaborating experience. David Castro is throwing his artistry at the Prosthetic Super Heroine. Pam Noles helped guide my many awkward steps towards building the staple draping and the art. Dave Robkin and his mom Rochelle are just awesome. And there are too many friends who’ve given me a hand for me to list.
You amazing people are why I bother. THANK YOU.
A. Laura Brody
I re*make mobility devices and materials and give them new lives. Sometimes I staple drape.