Canadian Artist working in Art + Medicine
Sequence 01.00_00_25_06.Still005.jpg

Solastalgia

2019 - Co-created with Dan Harvey

This is documentation of the in-progress work of “Speculative Psychiatry” in Dyscorpia at Enterprise Square Gallery in Edmonton, AB in April 2019.

Where nostalgia describes the pain of longing for home when away, Solastalgia names the melancholy experienced when home itself becomes new and uncanny. It identifies the feelings of loss and anxiety felt when our sense of place and identity are challenged, by events like floods or forest fires, new risks of contagious diseases like Lyme or Zika, or unfamiliar experiences like smoke-filled summer skies and too-early bird calls….


What guided this work were my children, Elliot and Mary. I see the world they are growing up in, growing into and I made this with their futures, their children’s futures, and their children’s children’s futures in mind. I wondered how their mental health and psychological development would be affected by growing up in the Anthropocene: an epoch of global warming, extreme weather events, the sixth great mass extinction, acidification of the oceans, plastics in everything and everyone, and the loss of the natural world. What kind of new anxieties, traumas, disorganized attachments, storm fears, species-loss melancholia, or Solastalgia with emerge as their home, their world becomes unfamiliar?