“There was another life that I might have had, but I am having this one.” – Kazuo Ishiguro
Jenny Wilde is an artist, herbalist, and member-owner at The Raven’s Wing Co-Op in Portland. She has a BFA in Sculpture from California College of the Arts (2010) and an MFA in Visual Studies from Pacific Northwest College of Art (2022). She uses a plurality of mediums such as writing, painting, film, and embroidery to explore from multiple vantage points the nature of memory, absence, and loss, and the stories we tell to fill in the gaps; she currently hosts an online Death Cafe. Her work has been shown in the San Francisco Bay Area and Portland, OR.
As I examine the world around me, as I examine the history I’m given, as I examine my own memories,
so many holes in the narrative are revealed.
I know my own memory to be flawed, and I recognize the unthinking and intentional omissions of recent and past histories.
But those absences are teeming with truths that are hidden, lost, or impossible to know.
I reach for the tangled, pregnant absences and try to pull out what is obscured, but it’s not always intelligible to me.
I plumb the gaps and try to make sense of what I’ve discovered.
And always, in those gaps, when I cannot know (can I ever know?),
I try to at least leave kindness.
A handmade patch in the fabric of knowing, one that speaks to the absence, with care.