This exhibit, conceived by the Director of the Chemotherapy Institute at Assuta Haifa in collaboration with the Israel Cancer Association (ICA), and which took shape at an art studio for nearly half a year, will open on Tuesday, November 11, 2014, at a gala event in the presence of representatives of the Municipality of Haifa, Chairman of the ICA and Roche Pharmaceuticals Israel, which leads the "Roche lends a hand" project for patients and their families. 18 cancer patients mutually and individually delineate the fine line between life and death, hope and despair, anger and forgiveness, body and mind.
This coming Tuesday will see the culmination of a project which commenced about six months ago in the work space of Dr. Abed Agbarya , Director of the Chemotherapy Institute at Assuta Haifa, and continued in the studio of artist M. Roni Roth Palmer in a series of sessions with 18 lung cancer patients.
Mr. Meir Portal, 55, a lung cancer patient for nearly three years, one of the 18 exhibit artists: "When Tova, the Head Nurse at the Oncology Ward at Rambam, told me about the project and the workshop, I immediately took on the challenge. Everyone was asked to draw a segment of a bigger picture of a colorful and optimistic landscape on a small canvas which the workshop moderator, Roni, chose for us. At the same time, Roni provided us with a large canvas, which we tackled in our free time, to create a release for anxieties, uncertainty, anger and concern. Based on the joint picture, I realized just how many shades of grey and black there are, and how much each of us experiences the disease in his or her own way".
M. Roni Roth Palmer, the moderator of the "Tziurea" Workshop: "Being in the company of 18 individuals living with lung cancer is a very moving experience. 18 female and male patients, each one with his or her own life story, were excited about this opportunity to take a paint brush and create art. People in complex situations turn out to be optimistic and full of joie de vivre."
The driving force behind the project, Dr. Abed Agbarya, relates details of this initiative: "It started four years ago in Geneva. I attended a Lung Cancer conference and what drew my attention at the medical exhibit was a small and modest corner displaying artworks that were drawn by lung cancer patients. The initial meeting was very moving, as a human being and as a doctor, who accompanies patients at different stages along the disease trajectory, and during this process, perceives their numerous needs - both physical and emotional - from up close. People who have lung cancer are not just patients - they are first and foremost people, with a strong desire to create, and to express what they are going through. I am glad that these 18 artists and I have been given this opportunity."
The opening ceremony will take place, as aforementioned, on Tuesday, November 11, at Kastra Center, Haifa, at 17.00, in the presence of Prof. Eliezer Robinson, Chairman of the ICA, Mr. Doron Sakel, Haifa Municipal Department of Education, and Dr. Abed Agbarya, Director of the Chemotherapy Institute, Assuta Haifa.
Details in the attached invitation (in Hebrew).
"The ICA commends and encourages unique activities such as 'Tziureya', which empower the patient and help alleviate tension and anxieties. The ICA believes that the emotional aspect constitutes a significant component of the coping process. At the ICA 'Strong Together' Support Centers throughout Israel, participants are given the opportunity to join a wide array of mind-body activities, such as yoga, meditation, art lessons, and more, in which patients can receive assistance and provide assistance in improving their quality of life and in coping with the disease."
The exhibit and the workshop were held as mentioned, in collaboration with the ICA and Courtesy of "Roche Lends a Hand", the social initiative of Roche Pharmaceuticals Israel, to enhance the quality of life of patients and their families.