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Blog - Leah Jones

Life (and art), Interrupted

black and white portrait photo of a learning disabled couple

Leah and Andrew

Me and my fiancé Andrew were supposed to be getting married at the weekend, becoming husband and wife with all our families and friends watching. This day has been a dream of ours. Like many people with learning disabilities, it’s been a long journey for us to be married. But sadly, we had to postpone the wedding because of the coronavirus.

As you can imagine, we are hugely disappointed and heartbroken. But of course, we want to make sure that everyone is safe, that those who are coming to the wedding are healthy, fit and well.

While this is a blog series focusing on my work as a curator and as an artist, my personal life is closely connected to, and very much inspires my creative work. So, I wanted to share my wedding postponement, how I spent Saturday 4th April and with that in mind think about what the pandemic might mean for my life and my future work. I sense these events will shape the exhibition in some way.

Myself and Andrew decided to come up with an itinerary for a day to mark a date we’ve been looking forward to for so long. There was a bridal entrance to our favourite song, personal vows and promises. We played Andrew’s recording of the song “Beautiful in White” which he recorded for our special day, we had tea and cake together and recreated what would have been our first dance. I’m thinking about including something from this day in the exhibition, but not quite sure what yet.

Leah and Andrew on a zoom video call with P.A Jade

But the wedding plans are just the first big change. Another big change for me is how coronavirus has transformed the way me and my P.A Jade work together. This week we have spent much time thinking about how to re-engineer our relationship when we can’t see each other face to face. We now do zoom video calls which makes thing a little easier. During these calls we talk about the work I am doing… Jade gives me notes and suggests tasks for me to do at home.

These changes have not been all bad. Finding new ways of working together and connecting is a good thing, it’s certainly made creating work more flexible. But I am worried about how to adapt curating an exhibition without the facilitation I am used to while this is going on. I think as the exhibition progresses, it will be stressful for me and Jade do to our job as it means radically changing what we know and how to work.

That’s all for now, I’ll be back soon with the next installment of curating my exhibition.


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