We are pleased that the The Elephant In The Room enjoys a connection with the wonderful artist, Antonia Rolls. Antonia has joined us at The Elephant in The Room in both Swansea and Dorchester, to exhibit her collection of paintings 

    A Graceful Death

    The powerful exhibition, “A Graceful Death – Portraits and Words from the End of Life”, created by the artist Antonia Rolls. 

    The exhibition, which has been travelling the UK since 2009, contains work that began when Antonia’s partner, Steve, was diagnosed with liver cancer in 2007. Antonia started painting Steve’s last few weeks, days and the day of his death, with no other aim but to survive and understand her terrible loss. 
    Antonia says, “I had no idea how paintings of someone dying and dead would be received, and feared that they would be too much for the public to see. But the response was wonderful; everyone who came had a story to tell . . . the paintings deeply resonated with those who had experienced loss”. 

    The collection developed as other people who were approaching death, or undergoing treatment for a life-threatening condition asked to have their portraits and stories included in the exhibition. To date A Graceful Death has 52 paintings and portraits, interviews and films, all telling the stories of and showing portraits of who is dying, and how they are doing it. 

    Alongside each painting are words from the sitter, telling us something about them, together with poems sent in by people moved to do so by the paintings. 

    “I want to show the miracle of life and death, the power of our spirit to keep going and the majesty and awe of death which is beyond explanation.”