I’ve been selected to collaborate with a scientist for an Art & Science project responding to the 1001 Critical Days cross party Manifesto with an exhibition as a creative response at the UK Houses of Parliament titled ‘Tomorrow’s Child’. The project brings artists and scientists together to respond to the topic of the pregnancy and the child development from the conception until the age of two and raise awareness of the importance of social and emotional wellbeing. The exhibition covers different aspects of child development from the conception until age of two.
I’ve been paired to collaborate with Kitty Hagenbach, perinatal and parent/child psychotherapist with 25 years experience in the fields. After our conversations on the topic I’ve decided to put the mother and the baby together in a womb as their relationship start since the conception. Everything what the mother feels and experience affects the embryo and the future human being’s life, which play a huge role for our society and the quality of life.
My works are like huge colourful ultrasound images capturing the baby’s emotional movements in the womb during pregnancy. The drawn fingers represent the very unique touch and emotion exchanged between the mother and the baby. My art installation and Kitty Hagenbach’s scientific abstract paper are titled ‘Deepest Imprints’ as during the baby’s development in the womb all of the mother’s emotional experiences imprints in the future human being and affect every aspect of life.
The artwork ‘Perfect Harmony’ shows the mother and the baby in a harmonious relationship, which is result of the mother’s happy state of mind. The second artwork ‘Anxious Touch’ showing the mother that is stressed from the life’s difficulties, result of an unsupported pregnancy. The baby feels all the emotions and feelings experiences from the mother. You can see the baby’s foot kicking out and the hands touching the mother’s face trying to calm her. I’ve made the mother hands bigger as she has to be able to manage with everything by herself and to remain strong enough to keep good care of her child.
Valeriya N-Georg is an artist inspired by Neuroscience, Psychology and Consciousness Studies, who works with a range of media: drawing, printmaking, sculpture, digital and mixed media. She is interested in exploring the boundaries between the inner and outer body; between the physical and metaphysical; tangible and intangible. N-Georg combines digital production with making by hand and has developed experimental new techniques for making monotype prints, based on layered acrylic gel on boards and light box installations, which she scans, collages and manipulates digitally to create large scale digital prints.
Her work is deeply influenced by sources such as Antonio Damasio’s research on the relationship between the brain and the consciousness, the role of emotions and feelings for our life-regulating processes and mental representations of our body states, or Dr. Bruce Lipton’s ideas about interactions between mind and body and the processes by which cells receive information.
Valeriya completed MA Visual Arts in Printmaking at University of The Arts London in 2014, since then she participated in many exhibitions nationwide and abroad.
Her work was acquired by the Global Eye Art Collection, who also funded an additional commission on the subject of ‘Optogenetics’, the neuromodulation technique employed in behavioral neuroscience that uses a combination of techniques from optics to genetics to control the activity of the individual neurons in living tissue.
N-Georg’s work has been included in many private collections across UK, Europe and America.
Deepest Imprints by Valeriya N-Georg
The mother and the baby are together in a womb as their relationship start from conception. Everything the mother feels and experience affects the embryo and the future human being’s life, which play a huge role for our society and the quality of life.
The artworks are like huge colourful ultrasound images capturing the baby’s emotional movements in the womb during pregnancy. The drawn fingers represent the very unique touch and emotion exchanged between the mother and the baby. The art and Science installation is titled ‘Deepest Imprints’ as during the baby’s development in the womb all of the mother’s emotional experiences imprints in the future human being and affect every aspect of life.
The artwork ‘Perfect Harmony’ shows the mother and the baby in a harmonious relationship, which is the result of the mother’s happy state of mind.
The second artwork ‘Anxious Touch’ shows a mother who is stressed from life’s difficulties, as s result of an unsupported pregnancy. The baby feels all the emotions, feelings and experiences from the mother. You can see the baby’s foot kicking out and the hands touching the mother’s face trying to calm her. The mothers hands are bigger as she has to be able to manage everything by herself and to remain strong enough to take good care of her child.
Kitty Hagenbach MA Dip Psych, Perinatal and Parent/Child Psychotherapist.
“Emotion-based mother-infant attachment communications are essential because they directly affect the development of the brain” Dr Allan Schore.1
Valeriya’s artworks depict mother and baby in the womb – our introduction to the world. They highlight the powerful impact of a pregnant mother’s psychological, emotional and physical state on her child’s development during the first 1001 days.
The emerging science of epigenetics reveals that genes can be switched on and off by the environment, therefore the experience in utero exerts a significant influence on a baby’s life-long mental and physical development; our health at every level is determined by our experience in the womb.2
‘Perfect Harmony’ shows mother and baby in attunement; baby feels safe, secure, trusting and loved. Successful prenatal bonding fosters secure attachment, a crucial foundation for all subsequent development. A contented baby is a joy to care for and likely to meet their developmental milestones and reach their full potential.3
“Meeting these emotional needs fosters secure attachment. Secure attachment leads to a background state of emotional wellbeing, and emotional wellbeing is critical to physical wellbeing.’1
‘Anxious Touch’ offers a contrasting reality; mother and baby looking away from one another as though appealing to the outside world for help. This mother appears unsupported, stressed, perhaps frightened. Her baby seems equally disturbed, anxiously kicking out while caressing mother’s face, seeking to comfort her. We sense baby’s insecurity, isolation, confusion and fear. This reduces the likelihood of reaching full term or later being able bond or attach securely. A stressed baby is difficult to care for, and may develop behavioural or mental health problems.4
We have an opportunity and a duty to raise worldwide awareness of the crucial importance of the first 1001 days. Our goal is to make available and accessible a range of early interventions and support for pregnant women and their families. By enhancing the experience of mothers and the babies they carry we can foster a healthier, more compassionate and caring society, reducing dependence on government and world resources.
Collaborating with Valeriya has been truly inspiring; the fingers in her images reference the many ways in which we touch one another. Artist and scientist, yet we are united in our conviction that every aspect of mother’s experience during pregnancy has a formative influence upon her baby. I feel the images born out of our shared understandings convey with great clarity the importance of nurturing our life enhancing ‘Deepest Imprints’.
1. Schore A on Life Long Health http://www.letsgrowkids.org/blog/dr-allan-schore-early-relationships-lifelong-health#sthash.SHmlct1q.dpuf [accessed 16 May 2016].
2. Glover V, June 2014, Royal College of Psychiatrists The impact of prenatal depression, stress and anxiety on the emotional, behavioural and cognitive development of the child; implications for prenatal psychiatry.http://www.rcpsych.ac.uk/pdf/IC14 S32 Glover Vivette.pdf [accessed18 May2016].
3. Wirth, F, Prenatal Parenting, chapter 1, page 7, Regan Books, USA, 2001.
4. Gerhardt, S, Why Love Matters, chapter 1 page 21, 2nd edition, Routeledge, UK, 2015.