• 24/04/2016
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    Holding Time at Royal Brompton Hospital
    A short film made by rb&hArts about the Holding Time project at Royal Brompton hospital
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  • 29/03/2013
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    Thoughts on ONCA
    Over the past few weeks I have been at the gallery every day. Sometimes I just sat on the beanbags and enjoyed the quiet. Other days I had others to join me: Lucila came almost every day. Many mothers came with their children. But also quite a few fathers.
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  • 30/03/2014
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    Mother Interviews
    As part of the Holdng time Project, these interviews with participating mothers provide background on their experiences breastfeeding
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  • 24/04/2016
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    Holding Time at Royal Brompton Hospital, April 2018
    Holding Time is a multi-screen installation featuring animation, stills and video. Using material created over the past three years of breastfeeding mothers.
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  • 19/02/2018
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    Parenting Science Gang, April 2018
    I’m a mother and my daughter is 5 and a half. I had a tricky time breastfeeding. You can read more about this experience here when you have time as the story is Loooong and sad, kind of. Although now I’m doing this work for a few years I realize that my story is quite typical of many women’s experiences But that’s skipping forward. So I decided to do something, given my skills set, it was probably going to be photography…I was amazed by how little support there was for breastfeeding. And I was also amazed by breastfeeding. It blew me away.
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  • 30/03/2014
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    There Then, Hear Now: Resonance FM, March 2018
    Mark Aitken examines the relationship between photography and sound. Today’s guests are Lisa Creagh who is known for transferring houses into light boxes and a dialogue between photography, digital imaging and painting along with collaborator and composer Helen Anahita Wilson.
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  • 30/03/2014
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    In Conversation, Fabrica Gallery, 2018
    During the Making Space Residency at Fabrica Gallery in 2018, Lisa Creagh and Christiane Monarchi held a conversation about the ideas behind the Holding Time project.
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  • 30/03/2014
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    In Conversation, ONCA Gallery, 2018
    During the Holding Time exhibition at ONCA Gallery in 2018, Lisa Creagh and Parlour CoFounder Lucilla held a conversation about the ideas behind the Parlour and Holding Time
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  • 19/02/2018
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    PhotoMonitor, January 2018
    This month Lisa Creagh will present her newest project ‘Holding Time’ at Fabrica, Brighton, as a multi-screen installation featuring animation, stills and video. Using material created over the past three years of breastfeeding mothers, this installation will test a working method of showing stop motion portraits alongside an abstract ‘time map’ based on Cosmatesque designs.
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  • 19/02/2018
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    British Journal of Photography, January 2018
    Photography, Motherhood and Time in Lisa Creagh's Holding Time. Urging a new conception of time as experienced by breastfeeding mothers, Creagh's work goes on show at Fabrica on 18 January, then moves to ONCA Gallery and Royal Brompton Hospital, London
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Page 1

Royal Brompton Hospital


In 2016 I visited Rose Ward at Royal Brompton Hospital to see the incredible work taking place to save the lives of babies born with heart defects. Often these babies are born straight into surgery and the mothers, having given birth, can only wait for the long hours that follow, before learning the outcome. These mothers are supported through this time with advice on how to best increase the chances for their child and one of the major initiatives is to encourage breastfeeding. Visiting the tiny room set aside for mothers to express, I came to understand how transformative art could be in this space, where women are alone, sometimes only a few hours after birth, dutifully expressing milk for their child's recovery.

Together with the team at rb&hArts, the department that manages and promotes the arts at the Hospital, we talked about how best to identify a mother to photograph for this space. Working with the breastfeeding nurse, we gave out cards to prospective mothers and this outreach paid off when Sabrina Byrne, mother to six month old Isabelle volunteered to be photographed at my City College studio in Brighton. Traveling from Southend on Sea, to participate in Holding Time on the very last day of shooting, Sabrina and Isabelle are an amazing climactic end to the many inspiring portraits that make up this body of work.

Isabelle was born with cystic fibrosis, a disease that can affect the lungs but also digestive system and pancreas as well. In Isabelle's case, having CF made it impossible for her body to store the nutrients in her food. However, she did not lose weight or show any of the expected outward signs and this is entirely due to the love and devotion of her mother who was feeding her hourly. This constant stream of highly nutritious food was keeping Isabelle alive, even allowing her to gain weight despite the seriousness of her condition. Once identified, her feeding needs are now more under control as she has a drug before every meal that enables her body to store nourishment.

For Holding Time, the preparation and dosing of this drug was captured along with the ultimate goal of a breastfeed. This animated sequence will feature in the  Holding Time animation and a still portrait will be placed in honour of Sabrina and all the mothers like her, in the small expressing room on Rose Ward at Royal Brompton Hospital.



Sabrina and Isabelle, The Royal Brompton cafe (picture courtesy of Karen Janody)

"I just enjoyed sitting there getting lost in feeding her, which is why this holding time project appealed to me so much

I’m so happy to of been apart of it, it’s been an extremely hard time and taking part in this has been a pleasure and helped me personally." - Sabrina Byrne, May 2018

Read Sabrina's story in her own words here.

 

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© Lisa Creagh 2018