LIBBY ELLIS

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

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This is Me with Cancer
color xerox transfer on bookbinder's board
8.5 x 10.5 inch accordion book
1990


This is Me with Cancer (detail)


The Hypochondriac mixed media 7 x 7 inches 1991


In August of 1989, I celebrated my 27th birthday, accepted the position of assistant art director at Travel and Leisure magazine in New York City, and was diagnosed with cancer. I refer to the year of chemotherapy and radiation therapy as my "Year of Dreams" -- dreams because the experience was like falling in and out of a fitful night's sleep of pain, discomfort, uncertainty, frustration, anger, and fear. Because of it, I've come to know life cannot be held in one's hand and shaped like a ball of clay. Life unfolds, on many levels, with no regards for the hands that hold or attempt to give it form. When one least suspects, life unfolds itself. Then life becomes the art of moving within the folds -- sometimes soft and gentle, sometimes bent and broken.



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