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The Forest 4
Helen Hitchens

The Forest 4



Title: The Forest 4
Year: 2021
Size: A4 297mm x 210mm
Technique: ink drawing

SACRIFICE – The Forest. December 2021
I have lost my brother, my father and my mother. By the age of 40, most of my immediate family has gone. The people I was closest to as I grew up, the familiar faces within my home, all disappeared to an ethereal realm we know nothing about. I am abandoned, left behind...within this world of mortality and realism, our busy capitalist existence doesn't expect death and there is very little time to process it, express it...I find I have rushed from university to jobs to new towns in order to avoid confronting the pain of my grief. Indeed, to 'soldier on' is rewarded as a brave, healthy and appropriate response. But the sadness, anger and desperation leaks out at inopportune moments. It is always inside. This project examines the faux-strength of internalising grief, hiding it from others.
I have created a children’s fairy tale story book made of my black and white line drawings without text. With influences from Aubrey Beardsley, Jan Pienkowski and Freud, the fantasy forest offers an explanation for the place that our loved ones go to when they die and temporarily leave us.
The completed limited edition hardback book is available for £105 + postage and packing. Individual drawings are available as A4 print 297mm x 210mm framed £450 each plus postage and packing.

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