I think maybe just maybe if I am able to hold it, feel it, turn it over in my hands it will feel valid and real and the whole process will in some way be worth it.
—Odia Reimer, artist
Unimaginable. Incomprehensible. Unfathomable. To experience the loss of a
loved one to murder is not something many of us will ever know.
INDESCRIBABLE: It is About Murder, a new art exhibit at the Canadian Mennonite University, features work by family of Candace Derksen, who went missing in 1984 at age 13 and whose body was found six weeks later in a shed. The show follows their journey through the years of coming to terms with their loss and the two decades to the conviction of her murderer.
The exhibition features the work of Cliff as well as his daughter Odia Reimer, Candace's sister. Cliff's contribution includes sculptures, as well as the sketches that he drew in the courtroom during the trial. Odia's work includes a series of 66 photographs retracing Candace's final walk from the Mennonite Brethren Collegiate Institute to the construction site where her body was found six weeks later. She also crocheted a collection of 490 tears which are suspended from a frame.
The show also includes work by Kelsie Trudeau, whose brother Morgan was killed in 2003. She is now fifteen years old. She says she took up drawing images of her brother to keep his memory alive. "I like when my mom always talks about him, so I thought even drawing him kind of makes it feel like he's here."
Some pieces by Steve Penner and Angela Lillico, close friends of the Derksens, round out the exhibit.
"INDESCRIBABLE" opening Jan. 27 at the Mennonite Heritage Church Gallery at CMU and runs to Mar. 10.