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MY LEFT KNEE
Recent knee surgery inspired these collages featuring repellent/fascinating images of the medical staples closing my incision.
I took closeup photographs ‐ lurid knee selfies ‐ of my inflamed, stretched flesh gripped by surgical staples. In these collages I combined the digital photos with pieces of my alcohol-ink papers, some selected for their similarities to my own skin, and inserted actual office staples to suture the paper together.
Now, two years later, I am fully recovered, my new titanium knee allowing me full, pain-free mobility. Only a narrow, pale, seven inch scar down the center of my left knee reminds me that anything happened at all.
I realize that compared to others' health conditions that are life threatening and cause chronic pain and disability, my knee replacement was just a minor inconvenience in my life. However at the time of the surgery and during recovery I did experience my own personal trauma and found that I could soften the distress and refocus my attention by creating art.