Feedback from the exhibit's visitor book:
“The photos are so powerful” “This is the best exhibit
ever!” “What remarkable stories this exhibit depicts.” “Ms. Pope’s photos are amazing and so are the families that shared
a glimpse of their lives…” — images: Rebekah Pope
Twenty-one photos (10 of them new) from Heartache to Hope: Middle Tennessee Families Living with Autism, our book, made their debut at the Vanderbilt Kennedy Center on MLK holiday, January 18. Today, Thursday, Jan. 28, we invite the public to join us in honoring the 18 families featured in our book. At 5 p.m., we will kick-off our event with an hour-long reception, which will include recognizing the families, a brief presentation from Vanderbilt Kennedy Center, Autism Society of Middle Tennessee and myself talking briefly about the book. If you live in Nashville or are coming through town, I hope you will make time to see photographer Rebekah Pope's stunning portraits. The enlarged black-and-white photographs feature the book's special families who represent many walks of life, numerous facets of the autism journey and, together, whose stories beautifully represent the complexities of the universal autism experience.
We wrap up the first month of this year with an event each week and are taking a book tour hiatus until April, National Autism Awareness Month. Stay tuned. Meanwhile, the photographs remain at Vanderbilt Kennedy Center until March 29, 2010.
One more note, if you attend the January 38 reception, you are also invited to attend the Autism Society of Middle Tennessee's monthly workshop series, which begins at 6:30 p.m., and will be featuring the topic of Asperger syndrome. Registration requested. The fee: a $10 ASMT family membership, etc., and includes free admission to all monthly workshops, or $5 at the door per workshop.
*There's a photograph of Grace and I in this exhibit, as shown in the slide show above. A lot of people have asked why Grace and I are not featured in the book. (You'll have to read my forthcoming autism momoir to get that story. 😉 I took a strict journalist's approach–no first person. We do appear on the next to last page and the back of the book under my producer and author credits. The photo of us here was taken when Grace and I came into the studio for my author photo session. Rebekah so loved this we debated–in a very friendly manner–about it's inclusion. I agreed for it to go into the exhibit, but not the book.