Glass Reflections at Derringham

[8 March 2017]
With the article celebrating and marking the Butterflies first exhibition, The Butterfly Effect, barely a day old the group turn their thoughts to Reflections. This the second part in the ever evolving year long exhibition series called Reflections, focuses on the elements of light, bringing light and life to all aspects of their life.

On table one we are engraving meaningful words on to the side of jam jars that will eventually become beacons of hope reflecting all the emotions and passions put on it. A few examples of which may seem fairly obvious, things we might take for granted, but when faced with losing other aspects of self they take on far greater importance.

Life Love Caring Laughter Happiness Family Hope

‘Removing the lid I get a faint whiff of vinegar, I offer it to the chap next to me to stick his nose in. ‘I can’t smell,’ he says’ I can’t smell because of the Alzheimers, what is it?’ Pickled Onions, I say. ‘Oh…’ comes the response.

This brief interaction underlines all the different ways in which dementia slowly takes away from a person.

The engraved works will be displayed with a light inside creating a dramatic effect in an exhibition planned for May.

On the opposite table it is perspex and paints that occupies the minds of the Wednesday Derringham Bank group. A different expression of reflecting light, this time illuminating a pattern or picture. Regular readers will know that the group are no slouches when it comes to creativity, before long the table is a hive of activity, with all manner of garden and floral scenes being created and one or two nautical pictures too. Spring blooms with daffodils and tulips, petunias and more with bright vivid colours.

On pieces of found beach glass we find dolphins and more flowers to be created in a hanging object that will catch the sunlight as it hangs in the window. There is much talk of gardening and gardens across the table, pottering in the greenhouse, discovering little pairs of eyes peeking out the mud. The simple joy and familiarity of finding frogs in the garden. Then the discussion moves on to more ambitious ideas, like draining ponds, even breaking up concrete to create pool extensions.

There is a definite sense of spring in the room. The Butterflies group look ahead with renewed fighting spirit to face the challenges head on of living with dementia.

[Michelle Dee]
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Supported by Hull UK City of Culture 2017