When her friend experienced the loss of a loved one, Alizah Hashmi was unsure how best to console her. In this personal essay, she reflects on how her friend’s loss helped her to realise that grief is unquantifiable, “infinite” and often comes without words.
Johanna Robinson’s flash fiction, ‘The Composition of Us’, celebrates friendship between women – the joy, tears, late night talks and parties experienced before the pandemic and now in lockdown, online.
As someone who was already fighting a life-threatening illness, Tomilyn Hannah was familiar with difficulties of social distancing and self-isolation. But lockdown gave her an opportunity to encounter the kindness of strangers, make new friends and be part of a new community.
Shows like Dear White People, I May Destroy You and Insecure are to be applauded for focusing on friendships between black women. But, argues, Aysha Abdulrazak, to what extent are these being informed by a white supremacist lens? And who are they for?
In the first essay of her co-edited and co-conceived series, Disembodied Voices: Friendship during COVID-19, Sumaya Kassim reflects on the breakdown of a friendship, exploring feelings of abandonment, rejection and grief that led her to self-evaluate and cultivate new intimacy and care.
In the final postcard of her series, Rochelle Roberts reflects on the last few months since the first lockdown, and finds comfort and hope in the artwork of Somaya Critchlow and Dorothea Tanning’s Interior with Sudden Joy, 1951.
When the world went into lockdown, nature appeared to take over, with seabirds settling in Venice and deers roaming Japan’s empty streets. Here, in the penultimate postcard of the series, Georgia Good explores nature’s return in Duane Michals’ famous work, Paradise Regained, 1968.
In Edward Burne-Jones’ Love Among the Ruins, 1870-73, Christina Makri sees human love and nature survive the collapse of the world, and argues that we, too, will find comfort in the chaos of the pandemic.
During lockdown, Julia Bagguley found solace and hope in her garden. Here, in the twenty-fifth postcard of the series, she reflects on another gardener, Gertrude Jekyll, as captured in William Nicholson’s portrait.
Georgia O’Keeffe’s Grey Lines with Black, Blue and Yellow, c.1923, is a painting full of movement that captures the New Mexican skyscape and reminds us, as we adjust after lockdown, that we’ll be moving again soon too.
Majella Mark looks back to her own artwork, The Return, 2020, a celebration of African ancestry, and asks where can black men and women go to be safe in light of the murders of George Floyd and Ahmaud Arbery?