For this project, I underwent three sessions of past life regression hypnosis, where I experienced 10 past lives. Each piece is a past life, consisting of a ‘tapestry’ and a ‘record’. The tapestry is a play on weaving the tapestry of life, harkening back to the Greek fates. I continue this theme of thread/fabric of life with specific embroidery of important items. I also use oil painting- being one of the most emotional mediums- to express the feeling and color of each past life. The records are handwritten accounts of each specific life. All of the records are placed on the floor under the tapestry as a kind of gravestone, marking each life.
~Work in Progress~
Past Life No. 2:
I was an aristocrat 12-year-old girl in 1778 in France. I was at a fancy party. I looked down at my beautiful shoes. They had small flowers on the side. I looked up at gold crown moulding. I was in a small palace. Women had powdered wigs and large dresses. I saw how I died. I floated above and watched a woman in her thirties fall over in the street into a man’s arms. There were buildings around, however, it was a dirt road. My hypnotist asked how I died? I said, ‘Heart attack’.
Embroidery, gold leaf, oil paint, graphite, and copper pipe on linen. 29 x 83 inches.
Ink, gold leaf, and 1778 French copper coin on paper. 28 x 33 inches.
Past Life No. 1
My first ‘Life’ during my first past life session was very intense. My hypnotist asked me to open my eyes and everything was dark. She said to ‘turn on the lights’. I was paralyzed with fear. I couldn’t move and I saw a light from a fire flickering on wooden beams. I knew I was in New England in a Christian / Puritan church or building. My hypnotist asked if I wanted to see how I died in this life. I declined. I’ve never experienced such immense fear.
Oil on Linen. 18 x 21.5 inches.
On Past Life Regression Therapy:
While researching hypnosis, I came upon past life regression therapy via hypnosis. I became very curious about it. I’ve always felt sort of out of place in this time. I enjoy modern conveniences, but I feel disconnected as well. I asked my Hypnotist if she would do some sessions with me. She doesn’t normally do past life regression therapy, it’s not well regarded in her field, but she granted my request. I was a little nervous about what the experience would be, thinking that there’s a chance nothing will happen. If nothing happened that would also be part of my findings during this experiment. I did three sessions and had ten past life experiences. Similar to my other hypnosis sessions, I was aware of the room I was physically in and I didn’t blackout. The images that I saw were less like a film being projected, (what many people experience,) and more similar to a dream. Colors, spaces, and objects were very distinct in my experiences. I don’t remember any sounds or smells. I would just know things as in a dream, without any explanation or proof to back it up. Most of my past life experiences were unexpected but make sense now. Two of the dates I recited, don’t match up — maybe I got one of them wrong by a century? I still have many questions if reincarnation is real, such as ‘As soon a person dies, is that person immediately reincarnated into another person?’, ‘Is time the same?’, and so forth. I waiver in my conclusion of the experiment: I probably made up these experiences in my head or perhaps science hasn’t figured it out yet; that our spirits are energy transmitting through time, connecting all life.