Kirsty 165x135cmOver the past few months Daniela has been developing a new body of work centered around addictions, the matter she has been feeling very passionate about.

The project ‘Progress not Perfection’ aims to raise awareness of addictions, pass on the positive message of hope that recovery is possible and help to lose the stigma that comes with it. The project consists of portraits of individuals who have dealt with their additions and are now leading fulfilling personal and professional lives. Among the subjects are celebrities Gok Wan, Jeff Leach, Kevin Dooley, Tony Kelly of Red Card Charity. The exhibition is also being held in support of Beat, a charity that helps people affected by eating disorders, for which Daniela has been chosen as their Selected Artist for 2015.

She is currently preparing for the first solo exhibition, that will take place in Debut Contemporary gallery from 15th-21st October 2015. Follow her on facebook/twitter, sign up to her newsletter or follow her blog to read about all the updates.

 

Background:

Addiction is an illness and should be treated as one. It is a state characterized by compulsive engagement in rewarding stimuli, despite adverse consequences.

Whether a shopping addiction or chemical addiction, addiction of any sort still takes a huge toll on the individual, their close ones, and society in general. In order to fuel their addictions, addicts go into debt, commit crimes and sometimes require emergency hospitalization. Their daily existence is afflicted by the isolation, loneliness and other psychological and physical side effects.

As we begin to see addiction as a coping and adaptation mechanism in the pressurized world we may begin to see addicts in a cleared and more empathetic light.

 

The purpose of Daniela’s project is to raise awareness of this condition, pass on the positive message of strength and hope for the possibility that one can change and to lose the stigma and judgments that come with it. Addiction is a problem that can befall anyone, that it is not a choice. Showing different stages as well as spectrum of addictions and emotional turmoil that occurs aims to enable people to see the  parallels with their own lives, which will lead to more empathy and understanding. 

Daniela would like to show there are many people who have overcome it, it’s nothing to feel ashamed about and many times the experience can be profound in creating other/new values in peoples lives.

The project enables her to complete the full study of each participant starting with research, interviews, sketching and then creating a final large scale piece. The process has equal importance to the final portrait. Images below are examples of the studies as well as large scale paintings she has been working on in the preparation for her upcoming exhibition.