his past year I have been going through old family photographs and wondering how I could honour those women who came before us. I really love the idea of remembering what our grandmothers have done, often without recognition, so for the next 52 WEEKS project beginning in January I will be creating a body of portrait paintings based on photographs and stories that have been shared with me. I'm still in need of a few grandmothers and would love to include yours (or your great-grandmother) and to hear her story in order to share the challenges and successes of these women.
I thought I should answer a few questions here about THE GRANDMOTHERS project: 1. I will post the portrait paintings every Monday in 2020. 2. You will be able to find them on instagram (instagram.com/veronicafunk) & on my website weekly (like my previous 52 WEEKS & Nasty Women projects). 3. I will also be creating a small book/exhibit catalogue for this series which will be made available to purchase online. 4. There will be an exhibit in 2021...the date & location are yet to be determined.
Beginning The Grandmothers project also has me reminiscing about my father. He was born in South America and began working at 11 years of age. Their large family imported items from Brazil to Paraguay using an old, unreliable truck which often stalled in the treacherous mountain passes. This required throwing wood blocks under the tires to keep the truck from plummeting down the mountain. It was also when he started smoking.
At 19 he drove my mother to the city of Asuncion to apply for passports in order to emigrate to Canada for a better political situation and for opportunity. He had a voracious appetite for education and an admirable work ethic and was able to work his way from being a miner to a senior manager.
He was always grateful to live in a country that allows everyone the opportunity to do anything they dream of with enough dedication & hard work. This also meant that my brother & I were expected to do well in school as he felt access to education was a great privilege. He instilled in me pride in my country, a strong work ethic and love of learning.
With this upcoming Grandmothers project I want to honour the women who have done the same, through their portraits & sharing the stories of their sacrifices and how they overcame their own challenges. Please click on image to read their stories and see photos.