I Am Not the Cancer is a 6-channel video / 8-channel sound installation by John Wynne and Tim Wainwright.
It is based on women from across Europe with advanced, or metastatic, breast cancer. Each participant’s contribution is unique and compelling, in part because rather than approaching them with an agenda, the artists used a kind of meditative working method to create a trusting atmosphere when recording and simply asked what was most important to them. Cancer not only affects the body but also encroaches on one’s sense of identity; the title of the piece came from the Dutch participant, Tootje, who said “I have cancer, but I am not the cancer. I am Tootje."
“Without commotion or comment, Tim Wainwright and John Wynne’s thoughtful installation discloses the experiences of women with metastatic breast cancer. Six video portraits are accompanied by the disembodied voices of their subjects, each recounting their own particular journey “through the fog [of disease]”. - Josef James Pitt-Rashid, The Lancet
“The projection of separate sounds and images, and the whisper of noises off, creates a muddled ambiguity that anyone who has struggled to talk about cancer will be familiar with. A sense of suspended animation is created as time is simultaneously compressed and stretched. Quiet, thinking faces create a vacancy into which conjecture about appropriate thoughts and words spills. The artists have crafted this uncertainty very gently but it leaves a lasting impression, making the isolation encountered by people with metastatic cancer tangible to the audience.” - Josef James Pitt-Rashid, The Lancet
I Am Not The Cancer has been exhibited internationally, including at the European Parliament in Brussels, the Hotel Intercontinental Ballroom in Dubai, Famagusta Gate in Cyprus, Congress Center in Switzerland, 2014 and at the Advanced Breast Cancer Third International Consensus Conference in Portugal.
Read more about I Am Not The Cancer on John’e website: www.sensitivebrigade.com/I_Am_Not_the_Cancer.htm