Judith L. Batten, an artist and graphic designer in Omaha, Neb., uses art as a form of self-expression and encourages others to find a similar process to do so. Her profound respect for those who serve in the military, including several of her close friends, led Batten to explore their plight in her work. “I wanted to pay tribute to the brave men and women that put themselves in harms way to ensure our safety and defend our country,” she says. In particular, the emotional and psychological toll of war injuries on soldiers concerns her. “This stress, combined with the emotional impact already endured during combat, is something that needs to be addressed in order for them to completely heal their body and mind,” Batten says.
On the Mend
6 x 18 in.
Collage, Watercolor, and Ink on Paper
The three panels in this piece represent different stages of the healing process. The first panel, which captures the aggressive and chaotic nature of war, juxtaposes a World War II medic treating an injured soldier against images of bone and tissue cells. The next panel, which reflects the healing stage, serves as transition point. ”The watercolor technique is used to represent the numerous and undefined elements that go into the physical and emotional regeneration process of healing,” Batten says. The final panel represents peace both personal -- in coming to terms and living with an injury – and physical -- as in the ending of war. In the background of this panel are fragments of torn newspaper. ”This is meant to show that we will always carry pieces of the past with us to remind us of where we’ve been and what we’ve overcome.”