7/17 Berkeley Event: Birth Rite – A Visual Celebration of Birth and Pregnancy as a Rite of Passage

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BirthWays, a major resource center for birth in the east bay, hosted the opening event for its Birth Rite art exhibit in Berkeley on July 17th.  In celebration of birth and pregnancy as a rite of passage, the exhibition showcased the artwork of five Bay Area artists.  Included in the show were paintings by Shauna Wiley-Naefke and Amber Pearson, two artists previously written about on Visualizing Birth (Labor of Love, Birth Partner, All Cycles).  The exhibit also included placenta art by Anna Hurty, belly casts by Premsangha (Jessica) Prakasha, and photography by Laura Turbow.  As part of the show, artist Mandy Rita Tardif performed belly painting in person.

I hope to post more photos of the artwork here or in followup posts on the individual artists.

Viewing this work in person would be highly beneficial to pregnant women in the Bay Area who are preparing for birth or are interested in birth art and in the visualization of birth.  I cannot think of a better place to relax and meditate on images than a place like BirthWays.  For those interested in viewing this artwork in person, contact either the center during opening hours or Lila Ann Frechette.  Lila helped to organize the exhibit, and she is trained as a doula.  She is also a practitioner of prenatal and postnatal massage.

I was especially delighted to spend time with members of the local birth community during the exhibition’s opening night.  BirthWays has been serving women and birth professionals in the Bay Area for 38 years.  Some of the doulas and I had the opportunity to speak at length about the visualization of birth.  We were also fortunate to have local artist Mandy Tardif present, watching as she transformed the belly of a beautiful pregnant woman named Alanna into a glorious lotus flower.

Screen Shot 2015-08-10 at 9.17.47 PMMandy Tardif paints a lotus flower on Alanna’s belly

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