The Abramson Cancer Center of the University of Pennsylvania
Last Modified: May 3, 2002

Tattooed Lady silver leaf on paper, human hair 9 x 9 x 1 inches 1995

I had a lumpectomy as treatment for breast cancer. I see the little tattoo dots that were made before my radiation every time I wash or shave under my arms. They may be small, but they are always there to remind me.

Tattoos are Forever paint on paper, human hair, nails, glass, cork 11 x 13 x 2 inches 1995

My art certainly helped me get through my experience with cancer. We were getting ready to leave for Maine, where we live four months of the year -- the car was almost all packed -- when I received a call from my doctor saying there was something suspicious on the mammogram I'd had the week before. Two days later, I had a lumpectomy.

I was very lucky; the cancer had not engaged the lymph nodes. I figured my cup was half full. When I could find time to get into the studio, it was a joy. One eight-foot paper sculpture took most of the summer to finish, but when it was finished, I had a great sense of accomplishment. I had put the cancer behind me and created something new and wonderful.


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