THEO IS THEO IS THEO: Cynthia Lawrence-John

Summer 2017. I remember it only too well… Wincing in pain at the bite marks which littered my arms, chest, in fact every part of my upper body. The bite marks being an expression of my son Theo’s frustration… overstimulation…attempts at verbal communication which could not be articulated… which didn’t exist. This mixed media installation is about my continuing journey raising a child with autism spectrum disorder ( ASD). It is not a ‘pity party’, I want the piece to speak to people on many levels, there are certain notions and feelings around ASD – denial, confusion, frustration… I want to celebrate my son and all the ASD children. Through Theo I have learned to understand my own idiosyncrasies and my ‘spectrum-y’ outlook on life… there are plus and minus points. This piece is a celebration and empowerment for parents/guardians and relatives who are on a similar path. It can be a very lonely, exhausting and daunting path, until you share stories with others in the same situation. The work will incorporate text, photography, film and noise!

Theo is Theo is Theo

What is your practice?


What drew you to this artform?

Studied photography as a degree and have always used photography as a form of communication.

Who is your art hero?

Gordon Parks

As restrictions are lifting where will you be heading to first in Margate?

An empty beach

Tell us a bit about this place

What do you see the artists role being in the overall effort to dismantle systemic racism?

Art is not solely about pretty pictures… yes that’s just one facet of art. Art has the power to speak with people on a political level… an image can speak equally if not sometimes more than words!