“Taking Pause” Art Exhibit Spotlight: From Medic to Patient

May 24, 2021
Junell W. relayed dizzying changes in her life for "Taking Pause," a public art installation in downtown Princeton. Photo: Robin Resch

“Tears were plentiful but the amount of support that I received kept me pushing through,” wrote Junell W., a frontline worker at Penn Medicine Princeton during the coronavirus pandemic. Her reflection added to the Princeton edition of Taking Pause, a public art installation hosted by the Arts Council of Princeton, with support from the Princeton University Humanities Council. Other sponsors include Timothy M. Andrews, Princeton Future, and the Bank of Princeton.

For over a month, Junell and her husband lay bedridden, battling illness, with him on a ventilator and her struggling to breathe. Their daughter needed to come home from college to care for her ailing parents and grandfather. Friends delivered groceries, flowers, and gifts.

“Some came to my garage to just see my face to have that peace of mind of seeing me upright out of bed,” Junell recounted. “Some went and stood outside of my husband’s hospital room day after day praying for him…holding up written signs to let him know that I was ok and to keep fighting.”

Located in Dohm Alley, near the corner of Nassau and Witherspoon Streets, Taking Pause displays portraits and stories collected by Robin Resch GS ’03 surrounding the question, “What is irreplaceable to you?” Visitors can submit their own responses at takingpause.net.

The full photos and words of Junell, along with other participants, will be free to view in Dohm Alley through October 16. Each month, the Humanities Council will highlight one community member from the exhibition.

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