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Kerry Baldry In Focus

We interview visual artist Kerry Baldry, who is crowd-funding to cover the fees for treatment of cancer.

Kerry Baldry is an artist and filmmaker whose passion for art was sparked by a chance house-share with art students. She has curated One Minute, a collection of one-minute films from over 80 filmmakers. HOME has featured her work as part of its Artist Film Weekender, as have national and international film festivals.

In July 2016, Kerry was diagnosed with a rare form of cancer called Ocular Melanoma, and last year this spread to her liver. Now Then found out about Kerry’s art and her response to the disease.

What inspires you?

The Human Condition has always been the main inspiration behind my work and often based on my own personal experiences. However, my studio is situated in the Snowdonia National Park and I think my recent paintings have definitely been influenced by being in this location.

What are the highlights of your career so far?

Being commissioned by the Arts Council and the BBC to make a short, one-minute film, which was screened on TV in the 1990s, showing work as part of the London Film Makers Expanded Cinema event when I first left art college. Other highlights along the way have included my work showing on billboards during Hull’s 2017 City of Culture and, more recently, one of my films being specially selected to screen at the opening night of 51zero festival.

Kerry Baldry film show

A performance of Kerry Baldry's films

What are your connections to the Manchester art/film scene?

I lived in Manchester for several years and met and kept in contact with some amazing artists. I had a studio at Cow Lane studios where there was a gallery space available to members. It was here I started to compile The One Minutes, which included artist filmmakers from Manchester. I continue to have links with artists at Paradise Works artists’ studios in Salford; before lockdown they invited me to screen some of my 16mm films as part of the launch of HOME’s Artist Film Weekender 2019.

How has your cancer diagnosis affected your artwork?

It has been difficult to concentrate on much as I’ve had to figure out how to raise money for my treatment that’s unavailable on the NHS. Also, it has been hard to come to terms with having cancer. I have been painting a lot and will be having a joint exhibition in Ladbroke Grove with artist Helen Maher later in the year.

You’re currently doing a crowd-funder to raise money for your cancer treatment. Can you tell me a bit more about this?

I was diagnosed with Ocular Melanoma in July 2016. It is a very rare cancer. The tumour from the back of my eye was removed and tested to see what type it was. Unfortunately, I was considered to be in the high risk category of it spreading, at some point, to my liver. As they predicted, it eventually spread to my liver last August 2020, and I was told by my oncologist that the only effective treatment was Delcath Chemosaturation. This treatment is only available privately and I was told I would need at least four treatments costing £40,000 each. I do not have this kind of money, and the oncologist suggested crowd-funding. The choice was having the treatment or just a year to live.

The treatment is working, so if people would like to help, they could donate to my crowd fund:

Or share this link on their social media.

Kerry Baldry

What are your hopes and dreams for the future?

To be healthy again, and to continue to make and show my art.

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