Every 5 minutes someone in the UK has a stroke. The 1.2 million who survive a stroke often experience lasting effects and an altered sense of self that can be difficult to explain to others.
Building on dialogue with stroke patients and their families at St Pancras Hospital, Julia has continued to work collaboratively with groups of stroke survivors, carers and health professionals as Artist in Residence at The Free Space Project. Her project Different Strokes explored visual representations of the early stages of stroke and the process of on-going recovery.
Julia uses everyday objects and materials, historical artefacts, drawing and narrative accounts to jointly develop artworks through playful and experimental activities. Her art practice is influenced by her background in nursing, public health and community development and a desire to make visible or give voice to those who are overlooked or seldom heard.
The result is When Swallows Return, a powerful exhibition of sculptures, collages and prints that provide visual insight into some of the effects of stroke, and which reference and validate stroke survivors’ own experiences.