Imagine, happy as can be, driving at 60mph down a road with cars coming towards you at the same speed. One mistake, one moment of bad luck and all would be over. This juxtaposition of happiness and sadness, light and dark, good and bad, life and death has always fascinated me. I do not consciously seek this in my work but I believe it has always been there.

I have seen too closely the undignified, terrible crumbling degeneration and death of my father with dementia. The commode and the Kylie® bed pad (an absorbent blue or pink mattress protector) have become symbols of this degeneration in my work. I try and make the work ambiguous not for its own sake but to reinforce the juxtaposition of good health and illness. It is impossible in the minds of most of the young to believe that they might become mentally ill or incontinent yet it is a reality for some of all ages and particularly for the elderly.

A ‘single room with en-suite’ could be a hotel room planned for a holiday or a room in a care home.

The different coloured chair pads in 'Lounge' reflect the ratio of women to men in care homes.

How to remember to take your medication?

 

The Big Draw interview is at www.thebigdraw.org/the-big-draw-talks-topeter-haugh

 

* Kylie® is a registered trademark of Capatex Ltd