Exploring the Significance of Objects in Our Lives

“The Things We Keep: Exploring the Significance of Objects in Our Lives
Art of Aging/of Dying series
fman Center for the Arts in Manzanita
Tuesday | July 11 2017 | 3 to 5pm

Mary Ruhl will guide us into and through a discussion about how our valued possessions hold meaning for us through life transitions. The event is part of the Art of Aging/of Dying series and will be held at the Hoffman Center for the Arts in Manzanita. Admission fee is $5.

Many of us have experienced changes in our recent lives, moving to a new home, a new town, or the loss of loved ones. Often these changes require us to sort through our “stuff” or someone else’s. Faced with decisions about emotional, historical, family and economic value of objects, how do we decide which to keep, which to part with? What are the significant stories attached to some of these objects, and how might we capture these stories?

You are invited to bring a “keeper” object that has meaning in your life, and to share the story attached to it with the group. As time allows, we will discuss ideas about making downsizing decisions, considering the value of possessions and archiving family stories around these significant objects.

“ We find it familiar to consider objects as useful or aesthetic, as necessities or vain indulgences. We are on less familiar ground when we consider objects as companions to our emotional lives or as provocations to thought.”
– Sherry Turkle, Evocative Objects: Things we Think With

Mary Ruhl downsized homes twice before moving to Manzanita three years ago. She holds a Master’s degree in Interdisciplinary Studies/Gerontology. Mary’s Master’s thesis work investigated the question of whether cherished personal objects support identity for persons transitioning to assisted living. Before retirement, she was a research assistant at OHSU’s Layton Center for Aging and Alzheimer’s disease. Previous to her work as a gerontologist, Mary was a graphic designer, photo art director and photo stylist – arranging objects, text and images to impart meaning and messages.

  If you’d like to be on an email list for the Art of Aging and Art of Dying announcements, email telaskinner@gmail.com

The Art of Aging/of Dying Series is a program of the Hoffman Center of the Arts and will be held at the Hoffman Center (across from Manzanita Library at 594 Laneda Ave). Further information is available at www.hoffmanblog.org online or contact Tela Skinner, at telaskinner@gmail.com

For more information contact Mary Ruhl, cardoons@nehalemtel.net.


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