To accompany our current exhibition ‘Infinitas Gracias: Mexican miracle paintings‘, we’ve been working with professional illustrators to produce contemporary votive illustrations based on stories submitted by visitors to Wellcome Collection and to our website. Just as Mexican ex-voto paintings were made by painters to tell stories of thanks, we want to hear contemporary stories of gratitude and explore the process of exchange between storyteller and illustrator.
Polly Alizarin Harvey’s first votive illustration is for this story submitted at Wellcome Collection:
When I was nine my family got locked out of our home. My father thought that the clever thing to do was to climb up and get into the first floor window and let us in that way. He was, however, 65 at the time and slipped, falling two stories. He cracked his skull in three places and damaged all of the nerves in his right arm. I am so grateful that he survived and recovered. I love him every day and am humbled by science’s ability to fix what appeared so broken.
Joanna Paterson, London, Christmas 1999. For the doctors and whatever greater force is out there.
Could your gratitude inspire a votive? Tell us your story, and it could form the basis for an illustration.