a grieving mother's pinhole photographs

by Deb Todd Wheeler

Opening Reception: Saturday, April 6, 1-6pm

Love, Loss, and the Book of Walks Community Grief Ritual: Sunday, April 7, 2pm

Show Runs: April 6—May 26, 2024

Deb Todd Wheeler’s BEING WITH MY SUN exhibition features pinhole photographs on silver gelatin photo paper. Also on view is an excerpt from the video NO SLEEPING: dedicated to the dedicated, a silent video that explores other bedrooms preserved for generations in historic homes across the country.  

Join us Sunday, April 7, at 2pm for Love, Loss, and the Book of Walks. Working in community to honor the wild and unwieldy journey of grieving, Love, Loss, and the Book of Walks sets out to host a 90-minute directed gathering. We will co-create a space to step away from things for a long minute, vibrate together in silence, and grieve what we have lost, are losing, and are learning how to release. A short reading from the Book of Walks will offer some guidance for our event.

On sunny days, a beam of sunlight projects through the window of my son Lucas’ bedroom. It arrives around 11am, and slowly works its way across the room until about 3pm. In the years after Lucas’ death, I began communing with this light beam, watching it move and light up the unsettling stillness of this space. I am mesmerized by how it illuminates the accumulating dust settling on his stuff and floating up into the air I breathe. Using an array of pinhole cameras, I engage in a silent conversation with this room, with his things, and with the power of the vibrant sun. I am inviting the unexpected; the sun and the photographic paper conspire to reveal compositions I could never predict.

- Deb Todd Wheeler

Deb Todd Wheeler is an award winning multi-disciplinary artist in the Boston area who creates emergent spaces of radical generosity for emotional transformation. She creates provisional communities through gathering, grief work, and holding commemorative space.

The Boston Globe describes her recent powerful project as a “walking lament” through a lyrical landscape, a landscape of the unthinkable. She guides participants as they walk the wild edge of sorrow with geo-located audio in the remediated landscape of Lost Pond, MA. The RADIO SILENCE audiowalk involves walking with geo-located music, sounds, and live storytelling. The audio is triggered using an app that plays the original soundscape at specific points along the walk. This began after Lucas’ sudden death as a personal grief ritual, and evolved over time into a space of care, connection, and reclamation. Since 2019, Wheeler has guided hundreds of audiowalks through the Lost Pond Sanctuary. Her newly released The Book of Walks is an edited logbook from RADIO SILENCE and is offered for sale in support of The Children’s Room in Arlington, MA.

Wheeler is on the Graduate Faculty at Mass MOCA Art + Design. She is an artist, educator, musician and a Deep Listening facilitator. She is a founding member of the LENNYcollective, and is represented by Ellen Miller Gallery in Boston.



The Boston Globe

The Children’s Room


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