Saturday, 17 May 2014

Guest Post from Erin Fromkes - Art in Illness

Chronic illness causes one to experience life in an extraordinary way. As with many artists the creative nature comes from a combination of internalized experiences and imagination.

When I am able, I cannot resist the opportunity to paint my interpretation of the medical and psychological happenings through which I’ve lived. My pieces have a tendency to cry out. They have a trapped spirit within that wants to be seen, heard, to reach another. My works are portals that connect me to an outside world.

One style of my work is short-lived. These temporary pieces, captured through a series of photographs, are created using pills, pill powders, teas, tinctures and medicines. The use of these familiar substances, which I must consume regularly, serve as mediums bringing forward strange figures and ghostly portraits.

Temporary works, arising to disappear, reflect a philosophy of my illusive symptoms, disease, life, time, and existence. These dark visions aim at releasing elements of my illness and strive to capture a visual essence for my viewers to experience. Along with these are emotions of fear, frustration, anguish, loneliness and a erie desperation to be recognized.

Alongside my pill creations, I’m drawn to create mixed media works. Using materials that are personal and readily accessible, I create paintings that combine acrylics, oil paints and torn papers.

My backgrounds are a collage of letters, notes, lists, old prescriptions, doodles and other papered moments of my life. These fragmented scraps make for interesting backdrops and quickly become more intriguing once an image is painted over top. Areas of the background are left untouched for the viewer to see, allowing little bits of information to be gathered, processed and interpreted.

This layers myself into each piece and lets the inquisitive viewer learn more about who I am. Connecting to an audience in such a way is therapeutical, for this art helps me to feel less detached, acknowledged, and somehow important, if only for the briefest moment.

Guest post by Erin Fromkes

More of Erin's amazing images can be found on her FB page HERE 


  1. Such talent! Very strong inages.

  2. Captivating images. The spoons grab me. I want to pick them up, inspect them, feel them, read them, hold them. I could possibly stare at them for hours!

  3. Incredible, incredible work. Like Holly says, what talent :)

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  5. Hey everyone. Was just stopping in to copy this link and noticing all of your wonderful comments. THANK YOU so much and giant thanks to Sally for having me as a guest!!! <3 &May the spoons be plentiful today.