Wool proved to be therapeutic first when my mother started developing a felting project for kids with Autism and Down Syndrome. As she’s a special teacher for mentally and physically disabled children, she wanted to find the best way possible to teach about objects, nature and other things of life by choosing a material that’s tactile, colourful and even smells good. During the activities, she managed to gain the children’s attention through the material. Inspired by that, later on I brought this technique along to a care home in The Netherlands to try it with elderly people who live with Alzheimers and Dementia. The outcome was a success! On average, out of six severely demented elderly, five would manage to create an art piece with wool. I believe that being in contact with such a material could benefit everyday healthy life as well.
As childhood memories seemingly fade away in adulthood, I believ that some remain deeply engraved in the subconscious and collectivel we seek to recreate those −or atmospheres similar to them− all throug our lives, by organising our environments accordingly. The space we live in could be arranged with a similar therapeutic approach, in order to have the opportunity at all times to reminisce, reflect, and also to focus on the future.
At times of recalling memories ~ atmospheres, it can feel like a membrane forms around our beings that embraces us, and takes us under its protection. Like getting a glimpse of how it could have been to be floating in our mothers’ womb. The re-envisioning of such intimacies happens in the mind—in a “third space”. The first space being the ‘conscious’ space, the second being the ‘unconscious’ and the third, the ‘subconscious’ space, the ephemeral state in-between.
Having a double founction: the swings invite you to contemplate — they give you a safe space, but they also help you to remember, as they get in touch with more than one of your senses. BABA Swings was created from the heart of the child living in all of us, until the very end of our lives: the one that reminds us about the gift of being born.