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The Art of Palliative Medicine - 2018 Semester 1

Death on a High Note

I’ve learnt from this gentleman that coming to the end of life has its ups and downs. However, his life is not full of misery and misfortunes. He doesn’t sit around all day feeling sorry for himself. Instead he has a very busy life filled with daily visits from friends and family. The piano is still a large part of his life as he has a grand piano in his home, and has many visitors that are happy to play for him; music will always be a large part of his life regardless of the progression of disease. At the stand of the piano where usually rests the song book and maker of the piano, I’ve placed the title of the piece instead, incorporating text into the piece in a location where usually we see the name of a creator. In this instance, the text – “Death On A High Note” is not only the title of one of the many pieces of music written by the inspiration of my artwork, but an accurate descriptor of palliative care thus representing the “created” instead of the “creator”. Although death is an inevitable factor of life, palliative care ensures that even death can be experienced in positive way, in a way that makes us feel like even our end of days have a high note.