A virtual memorial to what we have lost

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    As the art director at Well Desk, I have spent the last year looking for images to depict the devastation of the epidemic and the bereavement it causes. As the crisis has progressed, I have thought of all those who have lost loved ones to Kovid-19 – not to mention those who have lost loved ones, period – and how they are common ways of gathering Were cut off and mourning. Given the increase in numbers every day, it was easy to lose sight of the people behind the figures. I wanted to find a way to reduce the number of casualties and re-establish the visibility of those who died.

    To help our readers honor the lives of those lost during the epidemic, we asked them to submit photos of items that remind them of their loved ones. The responses were overwhelming, capturing love, heartache and remembrance. We heard from children, spouses, siblings, grandchildren and friends – people who lost their loved ones not only to Kovid-19, but for all sorts of reasons. In person, what was their togetherness to mourn together.

    Dani Blum, Khair’s senior news assistant, spends hours speaking with each person by phone. “It’s the hardest reporting I’ve ever done, but I’m really honored to be able to tell these stories,” she said. “What struck me most about listening to all these stories was how much I enjoyed remembering the people who died in the midst of so much tragedy. Many of these conversations begin in tears and end with laughter with people as they told me a joke they had lost, or their favorite happy memory would say to them. “

    The photographs and personal stories were digitally published as an interactive feature, designed by Umi Siam and titled “What Lose Look Like”. Stories we have revealed: A formal wedding lasso serves as a symbol of the unbreakable bond between a mother and father, both lost to Kovid-19 and mourned by their children. A ceramic zebra statue reminds a woman of her best friend, who died after saying her final goodbye. A gold bracelet that belonged to a father never leaves his daughter’s wrist because he is desperate for any connection to her memory.

    For those who are left behind, these things are a daily reminder of those who have departed. This property holds a place and tells a story. Spend time with them and you begin to feel the weight of their importance, the impact and memory of what they represent.

    The museum has long artefacts as a connection to the past. So is The New York Times, which published a photo essay in 2015 of items collected on 9/11 at the World Trade Center and vicinity. As we launched this project, we heard from many artists, who explored the connection between objects and loss in their work.

    Shortly after Hurricane Sandy, Elizabeth Smollerz, an artist in Queens, began work on “The Encyclopedia of Things”, which investigates damage and trauma through personal objects. Kija Lucas, a San Francisco-based artist, has been photographing artifacts for the past seven years, showcasing her work in her project “The Museum of Sentimental Taxonomy”.

    “Saved: The Objects of the Dead” is a 12-year project by artist Jodie Cerrone and poet Lorraine Delani-Ullman, which combines photographs of personal objects of deceased loved ones with prose to explore the human experience of life, death. has gone. And memory. And authors Bill Shapiro and Naomi Wax spent hundreds of people gathering their stories in the book, “What We Keep”, to interview hundreds of people and ask them about the most meaningful single item in their lives.

    As the epidemic grips the nation, the Well Desk will continue to wrestle with massive grief, which escapes in its wake. Other features of this topic include resources for those who are grieving, grief that is associated with small losses, and how grief affects physical and psychological health. As “What Lose Lose Like”, we are keeping the callout open, inviting more readers to present items of importance, to expand and develop this virtual monument, and a communal mourning space. Provide.

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