Exhibition portraits on wall, exhibition name sign

Arts & Culture

Poignant stories of Riverina carers feature in a new exhibition

Published: 30 Sep 2020 5:10pm

The challenging yet beautiful stories of Riverina residents caring for someone with a life-limiting illness are being given a voice through the new exhibition, Care Factor: stories from hospice and home, at the Museum of the Riverina.

Museum Manager Luke Grealy said two years ago, the Museum ran a public program related to palliative care.

“It drew a lot of interest in the community and at the end of that program, they asked the Museum to keep working in this area,” Mr Grealy said.

“We have been working with university lecturer and digital storyteller Pippa Wischer, who spent two years interviewing professional and family carers across the Riverina about their experiences.

“I think death is one of those subjects that’s still a bit taboo; it’s inevitable, but people struggle to think about it and talk about it and plan for it. I hope this exhibition helps people find a way to deal with this inevitability.”

The exhibition includes portraits and a 30-minute soundscape, created from the interviews and sounds of the Riverina Ms Wischer recorded while on her travels.

portraits of people hanging on museum all
A glimpse into the life of carers: Professional and family carers from across the Riverina talk about their experiences of caring for someone with a life-limiting illness.

Ms Wischer said she was pleased to have been able to bring these local stories into the public space through the exhibition and accompanying book.

“We hear stories from the capital cities, but rarely from regional communities like Wagga Wagga or the Riverina,” Ms Wischer said.

“These stories demystify some of the processes of death and highlight the humanity of the carers who were bold enough and honest enough to share what it’s really like.

“There are things in this exhibition and book that are going to be sad, but there are literally some laugh out loud stories in there as well and there’s lots of really poignant stories of love, care and friendship.

“It reminds us of how we can better support carers in our lives, and if we have a better understanding of what they’re going through, we have a better idea of how we can help them and that benefits the whole community.”

In conjunction with the exhibition, a live stream panel discussion, ‘Myth Busting: When Someone Dies At Home’, will be held from 6pm-7pm on Wednesday 7 October 2020.

Details of the event can be found on the Museum of the Riverina’s Facebook page.

Care Factor: stories from hospice and home will be on exhibition until Sunday 22 November 2020 at the Museum’s Historic Council Chambers site, Corner of Morrow and Baylis Streets, Wagga Wagga.