Voices & Visions: Standing on the Bridge Between Health and Disease

Opening: Friday, Aug 5, 2022 5:30 – 8 pm
Friday, Aug 5 – Sep 24, 2022

1957 Sheridan Rd.
Highland Park, IL 60035

 “I balance on the bridge between health and disease, living not in fear but with a caution that I may fall in.  I hold onto the connections with my family and watch for signs of similarity. I hold onto the hope that genetics will once again leap forward until mutations will be altered, before my children have to choose.  We are connected and separate all at the same time. I stand on the bridge so that my children can cross into adulthood along with me.  I stand on the bridge so that I can see both sides.  I am unsteady, but not afraid.  I am unsure, but prepared.  I stand on the bridge, firmly planted on the swaying form that holds us all together.” 

Caren Helen Rudman, Voices and Visions Curator and Founder 

Voices & Visions; Standing on the Bridge Between Health and Disease began in 2010 as an exhibit about breast and ovarian cancers. The exhibit was a great success, and the company Medline picked up the exhibit as part of their breast cancer initiative and proposed creating a tour of the 2010 exhibit to cancer centers across the country.  Realizing the strength behind the theme, TAC continued to present the exhibit as an annual event until 2012. In 2014, it transitioned to a biennial exhibit with a wider theme of cancer as a metaphor.  

In each exhibit, there exists a commonality derived from putting work together, organically developing a theme. In 2022, TAC is proud to present the most recent work by Ellen Sandor & (art)n who collaborated with curator/artist Caren Helene Rudman, “A Burst of Hope.” Using Caren’s Previving series imagery after undergoing life-saving surgeries as a result of her inherited affliction with the BRCA-Gene juxtaposed with the scientific sculptural renderings of CRISPR created by Ellen Sandor & (art)n, the viewer enters through this short film into a journey of strength, beauty, and HOPE. 

Each year, TAC honors someone who has battled cancer. In 2018, we honored Jackie Sabath who had exhibited in 2016 with what turned out to be her last work of art made specifically for Voices & Visions just days before the exhibit installation. Jackie Sabath was an established artist on the North Shore. Her powerful piece, ‘Back Up Against a Wall, but Moving Forward.’ In partnership with Jackie’s family, TAC created ‘The Jackie Sabath Exhibition Fund’ to carry on her legacy by helping TAC’s future exhibitions, social awareness, and educational outreach. 

In keeping with the theme of hope, this year TAC honors Clara Tomaz, whose story of incredible strength and perseverance exemplifies the meaning of HOPE. While undergoing the challenges of her cancer and losing her ability to speak, she created powerful videos documenting her story and is currently TAC’s communication & media manager!  

Each year, TAC exhibits the Voices aspect to be shown alongside the artwork. In 2022, we ask: How do you remain hopeful when surrounded by the realities of cancer? Email responses to: crudman@theartcenterhp.org 

The art exhibition opens with a reception on August 5, 5:30-8:00pm and will run through September 24th. Our galleries hours are Monday-Saturday 10:00-4:00.  

The Art Center Highland Park could use your help in underwriting this powerful exhibit. All funds received will go into the Jackie Sabath Exhibition Fund, which carries on the legacy of an incredible woman, artist, and friend. 

We hope that you will join our efforts by making a donation either by mail, marked ‘Attn: Sabath Gallery Fund’, by contacting us at 847-432-1888, or online at www.theartcenterhp.org/jackie-sabath-scholarship-fund.                                                                                                                                                     

As the curator of this meaningful exhibit, “I am amazed each year by the level of depth and beauty of the art and responses. When I speak at our events, I always say that this exhibit defies expectations and preconceptions about an art exhibit about cancer. It is anything but dark and sad.” Voices and Visions: Standing on the Bridge Between Health and Disease was conceived to express the shaky ground on which we feel when facing our mortality or of those we love. As we allow ourselves to share the depth of what is in our hearts, we shed light on that which gives all of our lives meaning. In 2022, TAC will focus on the word HOPE. 

The Art Center, a 501 not-for-profit organization, is the North Shore’s home for artistic discovery and creative exploration. Through innovative programs, exhibitions, and classes designed for all levels and ages, The Art Center provides a welcoming space for our diverse communities to experience and participate in the arts. For more information, you can contact our media manager at media@theartcenterhp.org, our curator at crudman@theartcenterhp.org, or call the office at 847-432-1888. 

Image: ‘Back Up Against a Wall, but Moving Forward’ by Artist Jackie Sabath, 2016