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… I started to think about the term ‘mother artists’ not directly because of the recent flurry of artwork made on the subject of motherhood, or because of having my own children. My particular understanding of the idea struck me like two lightning bolts. The first came when I had a miscarriage: because it was unexpected, because my own mother had never had a miscarriage, one of the first things that I thought when the loss started was ‘thank God for Frida Kahlo’. It was because of my relationship with Kahlo, with her as ‘mother artist’ to me that I was well equipped to understand an unfathomable experience. Later, the day after the birth of my son, my mother gave me a gift; it was one of artist, Tabitha Moses’ Dolls. Holding the doll in my hand, I felt sure that it had been created out of the same intense love as had my son. At the time, Moses did not have children, but it was clear to me then, that as an artist, she was already a mother. This said, the term ‘mother artists’, to me, reflects a particular way of interacting with the world and with ones artwork and is in no way restrictive to the traditional mother and child relationship.


Even before these two events, after the birth of my daughter, almost three years before the birth of my son, I was struck by a feeling that my friends without children were generally more ‘maternal’ than my friends who had children. For me, to be ‘maternal’ is to exhibit an outward connectivity beyond your own personal sphere of existence…

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Mother Artists, 2013

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