Welcome to the Can you make hair for me? collaborative art project
Can you make hair for me? is a collaborative art project by artist Eileen Powers with the goal of bringing expressive activity to those undergoing chemotherapy and other cancer treatments. I invite people to make hair for which I then model, style and photograph into a series of positive and colorful self-portraits.
Hair in the News
Boston Globe’s Cate McQuaid interviews Eileen Powers
When cancer took her hair, this artist found locks to laugh about
“After photographer Eileen Powers was diagnosed with lymphoma in fall of 2018, her community showed up to help. They made hair for her.
Cancer was putting her life on hold: Her business as a photographer, graphic designer, and illustrator foundered. She stepped away from pursuing her Master of Fine Arts at Lesley University. And in February 2019, she was hospitalized for emergency surgery.
“My hair was coming out in clumps and I was in so much pain,” Powers said over Zoom from her home in Yarmouth Port. Her partner, Tom Yonce, came to the hospital and cut it all off.”
Louisa Stringer interviews Eileen Powers on the Cape Wellness Collaborative Hope Podcast
The Cape Wellness Collaborative provides support and services to those on the Cape and Islands activity recieving cancer treatment and those in survivorship. The new Hope Podcast provides offers a wider platform and the capability to reach and help innumerable cancer patients and survivors. I was honored to speak about my thoughts on hope, treatment, and tell my story. The podcast is scheduled to air later this year.
Moving Can you make hair for me? to the Monochrome Phase
After two years of creating portraits for Can you make hair for me? I’ve decided to take the work in a new direction. During my MFA studies I became influenced by the black and white fashion photography of Richard Avedon and Irving Penn. I’ve since decided to make the focus of the project more internal reflecting the struggles and confusion I felt (and still feel) around cancer and survivorship. These black and white images are more experimental and based in the conflicts I have about wellness.
Since 2019, I’ve collaborated with artists and the cancer community to create over 80 different personas and characters.
Join in and make hair for me!
My goal for this project is have 100 people participate by making hair for me. The style, colors and construction are up to you. I only ask that you read the brief guidelines, use materials other than hair, and that the final piece not be a hat. I would like this to be a meaningful, collaborative project that I can share with others who have cancer and give them a moment of happiness in what can be a very long, soul-testing treatment.
Other ways to Participate
Become a Project Sponsor
Offer a Venue for an Exhibition
Write a Project or Speaking Review
Invite me to Speak at an Event or Conference
Make Hair for your Friends
Maybe making hair isn’t your thing. You can still participate by spreading the, following me on social media, making a gift through the GoFundMe page or offering to show the work. Please contact me if you have an idea you’d like to share.
Thank you to all of those who have participated in the project.
I’m humbled and grateful.