Author Archives: unlj

True Colors

What is a heart? In its raw state it is such an alien form; yet we are at its mercy. If there is any problem within its fragile walls, it ceases to sustain life. This teardrop-shaped monument is suspended between two trees, an abstracted form of a heart between two lungs. It challenges the perception of a heart as a complicated, uncontrollable organ. Less than 1% of open heart patients die in surgery, but 17% suffer from post-surgical complications. These complications permanently alter the way a survivor functions and thinks. This monument is a reminder that the heart is nothing but a tool and, fragile though it is, it is meant to assist in the living of life. The monument is located in a small city park across the street from University of Virginia’s medical hospital, where the artist spent three months by her brother’s bed in the intensive care unit after a serious complication in heart-related surgery.