Experiences of Ageing: Rollators

As a Postdoctoral Fellow at The Center For Healthy Aging at the Faculty for Health and Medical Sciences at University of Copenhagen I was based at Medical Museion and explored aspects of every day ageing within the context of the medical museum collections. Spending time looking and drawing the overlooked, seemingly unimportant and the overly familiar showed that the processes and artefacts associated with ageing are unique and vital. Drawing offers insight and appreciation of an under appreciated aspect of all our lives. One where objects are hidden within the body or socially invisible or deemed insignifiant but are all relevant and beautiful.

I drew two rollators from Medical Museions collection. Initially I found the objects to be boring and ugly. Then, as I spent more time looking and drawing, I began to appreciate their aesthetic qualities. Over time, I began to see rollators as essential, beautiful objects. They became elevated from mere boring, utilitarian things to be experienced as unique, beautiful and fascinating encounters and to help re-see aspects of ageing in a much wider and more positive way. One rollator I drew was the same model that Ingrid, the Queen mother, had famously used. Her appearance at a Royal function, wearing a dress that matched the colour of her rollator, helped popularising rollators. Its cultural and historical significance and the fascinating story behind the object were embedded in the drawing.

www.museion.ku.dk/2012/05/look-again/