One of our fabulous fundraisers Sharon is holding an Art Exhibition ‘Was I Really There!’ featuring  her own work to raise money for the Sir Robert Ogden Macmillan Centre here at Harrogate District Hospital!

Sharon’s Story

‘After symptoms of breathing difficulties and indigestion I was diagnosed with anaemia and referred by A&E for further tests which confirmed my diagnosis of bowel cancer. We were told that my cancer had not spread and they removed it successfully in March last year. The cancer was at stage three, so I was advised to undergo chemotherapy.

My first chemotherapy treatment caused me to go into anaphylactic shock and I was hospitalised as it attacked my nervous system. I feel lucky to have had such a fantastic team of doctors and nurses that helped me survive the reaction.  I was unable to touch anything cold or walk without severe pain and pins and needles. The treatment  took a month of recovery. The Sir Robert Ogden Macmillan Centre tried a new chemotherapy of which I could only tolerate an  80% dose. I had 8 rounds over 6 months.

I kept a positive disposition by using Art to enjoy a sense of achievement as each day passed. I am an art teacher and I use art with some of my students to improve their well-being and I decided to do the same for myself. During my chemotherapy I had planned a trip to Venice, the doctors said I could pause my treatment and go on the trip to celebrate my 50th birthday.

This exhibition is evidence of the year that has passed, proving how art can keep people positive and give a sense of achievement throughout a challenging time. I have produced a strong body of work including Linocut Prints, Landscape Paintings and the crescendo of my exhibition is my memory of  Venice, of which I would love to share with you.

My friends at the beautiful Art In The Mill Gallery Knaresborough will be hosting this extraordinary visual story of my art journey through a life changing year! Art in the Mill is a stunning independent family run gallery set in the heart of knaresborough, steeped in history it was built in 1808 and was an original flax heckling mill. It provides a perfect backdrop for my exhibition.

During my trip to Venice I often thought how amazing it was that I had actually got there, so I decided to call this exhibition ‘Was I really there!’ I also felt the challenges of the year could be reflected upon with the same question. I wanted to tell my story to give inspiration to those who are fighting a similar fight to me, to show that you can beat cancer with a positive attitude, positive thinking and good treatment.

As an artist I exhibit my work (signed with my middle name ‘Tinayre’ ) with several art galleries around Yorkshire and I felt the beautiful Art In The Mill in Knaresborough would be the perfect place to hold this exhibition as it is local to the charity and to me, as I was born and raised in Harrogate and my friends at the gallery have been extremely supportive throughout my treatment. You will find my work on the top floor of the gallery accessed by stairs only. This exhibition is to say a big thank you to all the people involved in my recovery, friends, family and professionals in my Cancer care.

The money I raise from the sales and donations of this exhibition are to be donated to The Sir Robert Ogden Macmillan Centre to continue there wonderful work.

Please contact Sharon for further details

Email: wasireallythere.artevent@gmail.com