unremarkable
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By Ruth Adams

unremarkable

By Ruth Adams


A series of 350 Polaroids, unremarkable was motivated by a desire to document my health after I was diagnosed with Hodgkin's lymphoma in November 2002. I imagined that the images would show the deterioration of my physical and visual health: the "cancer pallor" that I understood all chemotherapy patients to have; the loss of my hair, which to me was the outward symbol to the world that I had cancer; and the inevitable weight loss that I thought would happen due to the nausea associated with the therapy. I decided to make an image of myself every day for a year, starting on the day of my first treatment. But instead of depicting a devastating decline in health, these images reveal a rebirth. In the early Polaroids, I look dead inside—my eyes empty, my body already ill from the growing cancer. As the months progressed, the cancer pallor appeared and my hair started to fall out, but my spirit grew stronger—and it shows. With these images, I am excited to show the world that cancer is no longer a death sentence, and that the treatments, although horrible, are survivable.

To see more of
unremarkable, visit www.RuthAdamsPhotography.com.

 
To view the photographs that accompany this text, please refer to the print magazine.