Artist: Connor O’Brien
Media: Video projection
Gallery: CSULB School of Art, Dr. Maxine Merlino Gallery
About the Artist
Connor O’Brien is an undergraduate student in the School of Art’s Photography Program at Cal State Long Beach. He is a senior and is almost ready to complete his BFA degree. As a child, he would always enjoy using his camera to take pictures. His interest for photography remained while growing up and that is why he is pursing his degree in photography. Connor is a caring and humble individual who dedicates much of his time to care for his father.
Connor’s exhibition, Mentia is about a five-minute video projection that focuses on his father’s medical condition. As you walk into the gallery, you can see the video projection on the wall, taking up the entire front wall of the room. The video is playing in a room with dim light, making it easy and clear to see. The large video projection made it seem that you were a part of the setting where the video was filmed. The video didn’t include conversations of him and his father; however, it did have a relaxing instrumental song all throughout the video.
Mentia is an exhibition about Connor caring for his father with Dementia. The content of the video is a one-day experience of the care Connor provides for his father. He assists his father with showering and we can see that in the video when he is taking off his father’s clothes, preparing him to get showered. Also, Connor is assisting his father in feeding so he shares how he helps his father ambulate from his bedroom to the kitchen table to help him eat. After speaking to Connor, I was able to get a sense of his personality and how important it is for him to care for his father.
I definitely enjoyed this exhibition because it has to do with my interest in the medical health of helping other. I want to become a registered nurse to be able to care for those that need medical attention. I am currently working as a caregiver and I do a lot of task that Connor does with his father. I assist my clients with their personal care such as bathing, dressing, feeding and transferring if they aren’t able to walk. Those tasks were similar to the ones Connor performs on his father. I really like how Connor is caring for his father although it is a bit difficult for him since he goes to school too. This exhibition is by far one of my favorites because he was able to share his personal experience with his father and deliver is as a beautiful art piece.