LIFI 2023 and Projecting Grief collaborate to present new captivating exhibition

An immersive experience through real-life stories of grief.

The online gallery that explores the connection between loss, creativity and healing announces its partnership with Leeds International Festival of Ideas.

Projecting Grief is the profound work of photographer Jo Ritchie and writer Laura McDonagh.

After tragically losing her brother Jack to suicide resulting from a gambling addiction in 2017, Jo looked for others who found comfort in creativity and took their portraits.

She was then joined by Laura, whose mother Anne sadly passed away in 2019 and felt the urge to document her thoughts on family, identity and home.

A person making a paper flower.
Image: Supplied

Having featured on Projecting Grief herself in 2021, Laura joined Jo and they now work together to give comfort to others and explore the profound connection between loss, creativity and healing.

Now collaborating with Leeds International Festival of Ideas 2023, they are presenting an inspiring exhibition focusing on the complexities of loss and how art can be a useful medium for grieving.

Projecting Grief will present a fascinating offline exhibition in the heart of the city centre at Victoria Gate from 18 – 27 August 2023.

A woman on a hill holding an orange balloon.
Image: Supplied

Viewers can fully immerse themselves in real-life stories of grief and will also have the opportunity to take part in creative workshops covering textile art, writing and paper flower making.

The exhibition will be part of the exciting build-up to LIFI 23’s discussion panel event ‘How do we talk about grief?’ featuring Dame Prue Leith and Will Young taking place on Saturday 30 September at Leeds Playhouse.

Workshops taking place over the exhibition weekend include a creative writing workshop by acclaimed author Freya Bromley, a class on making your own pocket design by Yorkshire-based artist Hayley Mills-Styles and a paper flower craft workshop.

A man with an apron in a workshop.
Image Supplied

The workshops are completely free of charge and tickets can be purchased here.

In discussing the profound impact of creativity on grief, Jo Ritchie said, “Grief is an experience that touches us all, yet our society often struggles to openly address it. Engaging in creative practices, in whatever form one chooses, can offer solace and a sense of manageability.

“We’ve spoken with so many people who have found comfort, hope, and distraction through their creative pursuits. By sharing their stories and work at the Leeds International Festival of Ideas, we hope to start a candid conversation about grief.”

To find out more about the exhibition and LIFI23, you can visit their website here.

Read more: LIFIcast: The Leeds podcast asking some of the most ‘pressing issues of our time’

Featured image – Supplied

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