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The Lullaby Project is about creating a space to share, reflect and celebrate birthing stories. Each and every birth story deserves to be heard, commemorating the complexity of this passage. No story is too small. No detail insignificant. This is a way to acknowledge the womxn who have shared their body with another life.
These stories highlight the raw strength and power that’s activated from within to get through labor, adding nuance to shift the archetype of mother. Once collected, each story is transformed into its own lullaby. Uniquely tailored to reflect the journey of each womxn, the level of detail is dictated by each participant.
Collecting these stories has been a slow process, and an ongoing one, which speaks to the complexity of its power. A collective deep-rooted dismissal of the reality of the birthing process combined with the unequivocal truth that it is not easy to revisit this process or find words for it. It is practically indescribable to vocalize. So we lock them away. The Lullaby Project is the space where we unlock these stories, sharing a private, painful experience as a way of acknowledging its centrality to human existence.
The question of who hears these stories is a challenge that remains. Maybe by singing them we’ll hear them better, listen more closely? A way of retelling our stories, masking the pain through prose, I try to honor each transition into motherhood by rethinking the mother as a state of motherness starting from the moment that one becomes two, then transforming these stories into lullabies.
About the Artist:
Aimee Gilmore is a multi-disciplinary artist based out of Philadelphia. She holds an MFA from the University of Pennsylvania and a BFA from Moore College of Art & Design. Gilmore works in sculpture, installation, printmaking and photography and has completed residencies at The Fabric Workshop and Museum, The Vermont Studio Center, and The Wassaic Project in New York. Gilmore has shown work throughout Philadelphia and across the country including at MF Gallery (Brooklyn, NY), MIT Media Lab (Cambridge, MA), Brodsky Gallery (Philadelphia, PA), Icebox Project Space (Philadelphia, PA) and Project for Empty Space (Newark, NJ) as part of the 2019 PES Feminist Incubator. Her solo exhibition, The Let Down, took place at The Arlington Arts Center in Arlington, VA in 2018. Gilmore has served as Assistant Director of the Philadelphia Sculptors since 2017.
Learn more about the artist and the project here.