ONCA Gallery will be showing Holding Time for two weeks this spring, with an installation of photographic still portraits, a single screen animation of Holding Time, with music by Helen Anahita Wilson and video recorded interviews with participating mothers. In conjunction with e dedicated project website, where these interviews are regularly uploaded, the exhibition will feature a daily 'breastfeeding hub' where mothers can join in the conversation by breastfeeding together in the gallery. The exhibition will also feature talks and workshops around the theme of motherhood and time, focusing on the issues facing mothers who breastfeed.
For new mothers there is little in popular visual culture to affirm their new role as mother and breast feeder. Many new mothers want to feed their babies but feel isolated breastfeeding at home and may not have the confidence to breastfeed in public. This work sets out to remove the barriers to breastfeeding, whilst positively promoting this role in society by providing positive images of mother and child relationships.
In the UK, breastfeeding has been recognised as having a major role to play in public health and in reducing health inequalities, and has been translated into policy programmes such as the Baby Friendly Initiative that accredits health care facilities that adopt best practice standards for breastfeeding. However, less than 1% of babies are exclusively breastfed for the first six months of life.
You can read a transcript of this conversation here