Video

A Cancer Video

Lorna Boschman

1996, 23:00 minutes, colour, English

TAPECODE 098.10

Kathy Canter was a visual artist, herbalist and long time friend of videomaker Lorna Boschman. When Kathy was diagnosed with breast cancer, they decided to make a video about it. In A Cancer Video, Kathy talks honestly about her fears, the range of treatments she received and the struggle to keep focused on living when people expect you to die. Her son Ethan speaks about Kathy's illness, sometimes contradicting his mother's words with his own point of view. Lorna's voice serves as a mediator in this dialogue and a complex relationship between the three participants unfolds.
The visual treatment is poetic and lyrical. Elements like the prairie landscape, pelicans and snakes are evoked to illustrate Kathy's attitudes towards healing in the face of disease. For her, the snake became a symbol of transformation, away from disease and into a more creative way of life. The video shows a unique approach to death through living life more fully.

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