*Featured photo: Jan 27-2022-Ready to Start Section Eight_The Alzheimer’s Project copyright Elaine Longtemps
In the next issue of our magazine, which will be available from 30 April 2022, by subscription, you will be reading an interview with visual artist Elaine Longtemps.
With this focus, we’d like to give you a brief preview of her latest exciting project’s contents, some photos of the work process and above all, Elaine’s call for participation targeting our readers: “I am currently very involved in The Alzheimer’s Project, a huge project occupying most of the space in my small studio. Below is the letter I send out and post wherever I can”.
I am collecting memories for a large project on Alzheimer’s disease in which I plan to use 3419 ropes painted in shades of grays representing neurons and 3872 double-sided strips of text on fabric in vivid colors representing memories. The suspended ropes and fabric text will initially cover the painted word but progressively reveal it as they drop to the floor left to right building up to a huge tangle of rope and fabric.
I am requesting contributions of your memories. They could be pleasant memories, sad memories, historical memories, related or not related to anyone you know who has or had Alzheimer’s disease or any disease related to Alzheimer’s. I have 477 memories so far in 3 different languages and from places as far away as Mexico, Guatemala, Ireland and England. One of my favorites is from a musician who knew Aaron Copeland and describes an afternoon with him after Aaron Copeland developed Alzheimer’s Disease.
I am moved by the memories I have received. One was from a ten-year old girl in Guatemala with a photo of her holding the Guatemala flag. This is a labor-intensive project and very slow moving, but I am committed to it and encouraged by my friends to carry through because it is important. I am also encouraged by the people who have donated memories and thank me for giving them the opportunity to participate and to speak up. This, by the way, is really a memorial to my mother who died of Alzheimer’s Disease 14 years ago. By the time she died, she could remember nothing of her beautiful life. This project will preserve not only my memories but also the memories of all the people who have sent me and will send me their memories.
Readers of this article are invited to participate in The Alzheimer’s Project by sending a memory of at least five lines of text to firstname.lastname@example.org with The Alzheimer’s Project in the subject line. Please include your name, state or country and the preferred color for your text strips.