Like many others, at the start of this process I didn’t know what ITP means and what this disease involves. However, once I listened to the project presentation and Barbara Lovrencic’s story, I was more than happy to take part in the initiative.
It’s an honour for me, as a young artist, to have the opportunity to try to represent what this disorder is, indirectly telling the story of all the people affected by it. One could say that the power of art, in itself, lies in making the invisible visible and in expressing what cannot be said in words.
We were given the strength to take part by the words of people living with Immune Thrombocytopenic Purpura.
As artists, we believe that art can be used to give a new image to the disease, showing all those who encounter it – patients, but also their families and friends – a new interpretation and a new vision of it.
We want to share their experience, make it our own to a small extent and turn it into a work of art.
We got to know each other through the DAD, but we haven’t yet met in person. However, we were immediately drawn to each other because of our shared passion for art, observing the experience, beauty and emotions that only artists can create with their work.
Thanks to this project, we will be meeting in Turin to create our artwork.
The first thing we want to do as artists is to strive for art to play a much more important role in people’s lives, both as a more accessible experience and as a means of sharing between artists and the community.
Secondly, as art therapists, we find ourselves experiencing, reasoning about and sometimes facing situations involving the experience of care, illness, difficulty and personal and collective transformation.
Because of this, being involved in “The Face of ITP” is an opportunity for us to continue our research on these issues.
The initiative of creating an artwork about ITP has given us the opportunity to learn about it through direct testimonies. It has allowed us to talk about it, reflect on it and get involved with it, in the hope that this exchange and sharing can benefit those who have suffered and are suffering from it.
Hi, we’re Giulia and Caterina and we are students on the two-year course in Art Therapy at the Brera Academy of Fine Arts. Immune Thrombocytopenia Purpura (ITP) is a rare disease, which most people have never heard of. The name alone sounds frightening and creates distance.
We decided to get involved in this project because we believe it’s essential to shorten these distances, trying to raise awareness about a real disease that actually exists, but which is often forgotten and overlooked along with those affected by it.
Our work conveys fragility, strength and acceptance, drawing inspiration from the testimonies of patients with the disease, but seen as people with real feelings and experiences regardless of the number of platelets in their blood.
What motivates me to take part in this project is my strong belief in art as a tool for healing, relating and liberation through the beauty of making and observing.
Beauty is what has the power to soothe and heal souls, to ignite and reactivate slumbering emotions. Above all, art builds a bridge capable of bringing people together and uniting them, creating relationships and dialogues.
I feel the need to bring art and beauty into the hospital setting and give a voice and a face to the invisible experiences of living with a rare and little-known disease.
I decided to take part in this project because I think art can be the right medium to raise public awareness about this disease in a sensitive and respectful fashion.
Through our own personal approaches, we have an opportunity to focus the spotlight on an illness that many people have never heard of.
I was diagnosed with a rare disease nine years ago, so I know the frustration and helplessness that characterise the long journey towards a diagnosis. This is one of the reasons why I chose to get involved in the project and try creating my own personal expression of Immune Thrombocytopenic Purpura inspired by the words of those who live with this disease on a daily basis.
I decided to take part in the Face of ITP project after discovering what a long ordeal anyone suffering from ITP has to undergo. It’s a truly difficult journey, a silent enemy that sneaks into your life, showing itself bit by bit. Conflicting opinions among doctors themselves, thousands of possible options, but no immediate solution.
I can imagine the feelings of those who suffer from it, I can feel their frustration during every consultation, their confusion and their psychological stress caused by a number of factors, including the exorbitant costs of the various medical visits, but above all the idea that this disease is completely unknown, even to doctors themselves at times.
This is what inspired me to produce an artwork that could represent the route to a definitive diagnosis, with the intention of being able to give the disorder greater visibility, in the hope that people who will suffer from it in the future will be able to find a solution more quickly, precisely because it will not be completely unknown.
My name is Michela Meloni, I’m twenty-seven years old and I’m studying for a degree in Art Therapy at the
Brera Academy of Fine Arts.
I decided to join the Face of ITP project because I think it’s fundamentally important to be able to leave a symbolic trace of what this disease represents.
I was born and raised in Sardinia, a land where a great deal of attention is paid to blood diseases, partly due to the high levels of Mediterranean anaemia among many people. I therefore feel it is right to place the same focus on ITP, so as to increase the scope of research.
As a student and an art lover, at this point in my journey I can honestly say that art has existed as long as humankind has existed. The act of creation is an innate human faculty. Indeed, this is what enables us to draw close to eternal life.
As an artist, I believe it is fundamental to place our art at the service of the world and society in which we live, tapping into our inner dimension. This is why I see the proposal to create a work that raises awareness about this rare disease as an initiative for a good cause.
I wasn’t familiar with this disease and I was truly struck by the impact it has on people’s lives and their battle for medical recognition.
I believe this project is important because it is all about joining forces for a humanitarian cause that needs our attention.
ITP patients will certainly not be cured by our artistic intervention and will probably have to live with this disease all their lives, but being involved in a project like this means seeing them as important and putting ourselves in their shoes.
Their testimonies have been invaluable to the artistic process, to the generation of what is termed inspiration. We, the artists, have listened to their words indirectly, subsequently bringing them to the attention of the press and the public who will see the exhibition, and I believe this will do real good.
Both to them and to us.
ITP is a rare and little-known disease. This is why people diagnosed with the disease often find themselves facing it alone. One of the aims of “The Face of ITP” project is to increase people’s awareness about the disease.
When I had the opportunity to take part, I heard about this disease for the first time and I was touched. Having gone through an illness, albeit a different one, I recognised some of the fear that people with ITP feel when having to undergo constant tests, always thinking about whether they will be alright and what to do if they are not, struggling to talk about their illness with other people…