Ten Good Reasons to Stay Alive:
Painting all the flowers of the earth
Veilchen Trank nach Hildegard von Bingen
Silver Horse by Yoko Ono
Can love heal cancer?
A fox watching me lay in the grass
Reincarnation in the heart of a piece of quartz Hold my hair up
Shedding my bodies
The spirit that rules the fire and lives within it
My nothing from which I extracted an everything
— Maren Karlson
I’m grateful to have survived my second winter in Berlin. Most mornings her metallic deadening weight felt too much to bear. At some point in January I became so desperate I started to ask people their survival strategies for curbing the inevitable dread that comes with minimal daylight, biting air, and an empty bank account. This exhibition transpires from an endeavor to materialize the many conversations that took place with friends, family and colleagues over these past cold months, in order to shed light on and share the ways in which empathy and compassion play a role in coping with trauma, affliction, and rehabilitation. The artworks presented in Cloak of Mercy explore the mechanisms of empathy we pour into ourselves and others, at times coming to fruition by way of storytelling, making kin with humans and other earthlings, the creative compulsion, acceptance of otherness, and reconciliation with the dead as well as the living.