An artist talk by Letty McHugh about her project, 'Book of Hours: Reflections on chronic illness, contemporary art, Anglo Saxon hermits and the Real Housewives of Beverly Hills.
"Over the course of the pandemic, a complication with my chronic illness left me alone in a darkened room for three weeks. I drew comfort from an imagined Book of Hours. Half Almanac, half prayer book, medieval Books of Hours offered guidance for every situation and every day of the year. As I recovered I started to wonder, where was the spiritual guidebook for people like me; lost, sick, artists who watch too much reality TV? I couldn’t find one, so I made my own. Borrowing wisdom from Anglo Saxon hermits, contemporary artists and The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills. Book of Hours explores what it means to have faith, why we chase suffering and how to take solace in small joys."
“Funny, moving and profound - this is a vital contribution to writing on illness that everyone should read” —Polly Atkin, multi-award-winning poet, essayist, nature writer and academic.
This project was supported by Disability Arts Online, Dada and Attenborough Arts Centre
Letty is an artist and writer based in West Yorkshire. Her work explores the universality of personal experience, which is basically the intellectual way of saying she is interested in people, their stories and the things that connect us all. At the moment, she is researching ways of making work to bring connection and solace to people experiencing isolation, drawing inspiration from my own experiences of living with a chronic illness.