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Gillian, Alex & Amadeus

  1. Photography and Collage byAlex Franco & Gillian Wilkins
  2. Words by Nicholas Goodman

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This pandemic has transformed life as we once knew it. It has taken loved ones, shuttered businesses, and tethered many to their homes. Though the future still remains uncertain, this shared isolation has revitalized our sense of community and even, become a source of inspiration. While each of us grapples with the sadness, anxiety and ennui of this moment, many are delving into themselves and the things they are surrounded by to find some respite. For this series, we asked a handful of artists, models and collaborators to share their aperture on this experience in their own words and images.

Unconditional: How do you feel right now?
Gillian Wilkins: At the same time we feel deeply for those who have been affected by this crisis, we also feel optimistic about the potential changes that are on the horizon and hope that the earth has been given a proper chance to heal & regenerate during this time

UM: Do you have a routine or daily rituals at the moment?
GW: Simply going for a walk just to keep the energy, inspiration & gratitude flowing. We have always lit some incense and a candle first thing but lately our intention in doing this has been to send love & light to those who may need the extra support right now. Also taking a moment to meditate whether it’s the morning or the early evening. With a 5 month old baby we try to create space for some spontaneity but these nurturing rituals create a sense of gratitude & balance into our day-to-day lives.

UM: Name a few things you’ve been able to do that you never normally have time to:
GW: Getting back to old past times like cooking, reading, meditating and creating the space for this in the long-term. Making more of an effort to speak Spanish! I’m personally diving deeper into photography and creating more within this medium together with my husband.

UM: In what ways is this time making you think about life and what you want out of it?
GW: We are still relatively new to our life in Mallorca, and ironically, this sudden global recalibration has supported our transition. Our life in quarantine has been a lot about thriving artistically and establishing harmony and balance while we lean into rebuilding the new. Our baby boy, Amadeus arrived last November so these days have been about becoming a family just as they have equally been a time of “unbecoming” as we embrace all the change.

UM: What changes do you want to make in your life or work as a result of this?
GW: Where work, life & art become naturally synchronistic and intertwined.

UM: What changes do you want to see in the world?
GW: We hope that this moment has given people the chance to reset and realign with their values, adding more meaning and purpose to their lives as we move forward. We also hope this has raised and united the collective consciousness so that real positive change can actually take affect and the planet can recover.

Gillian on her state of mindI have a tendency to project myself into the future but this has forced me to remain fully present.

UM: 5 positive things that you have experienced as a result of isolation:
1. I’ve been able to practice yoga with my favourite yoga studio in Bali since studios have come online. Dream come true.
2. We’ve seen more bees and birds, it really feels like nature is thriving. Even here where the air and the water is clean, the island feels revived.
3. It’s given us a chance to reflect and recalibrate.
4. Our global community is strong and we are finding ways to inspire and support each other along the way. I find it so empowering to feel this connection with others despite being confined to our own lives.
5. Admiring the positive aspect of social media which is strengthening our ability to connect, share & unite, which can be a vehicle of creating change.

UM: What have you realized or come to understand about yourself that you didn’t before this experience?
GW: I have a tendency to project myself into the future but this has forced me to remain fully present.

UM: In your ideal world, what would be some of the changes you would like to see post-quarantine?
GW: That we refine our ways of living, simplify our choices and slow down. And that living mindfully and sustainably is the only way forward for the earth and humanity. That we establish new ways of consuming. That our governments create a functional and equal support system for people. That healthcare isn’t only for the privileged. That community spirit continues to thrive so that we don’t ever feel isolated from one another. And lastly, I hope we continue to strengthen our global connections with each other, through the micro-communities we are creating which will in return raise our awareness. There is so much positive & encouraging dialogue!

Photography and Collage by Alex Franco & Gillian Wilkins

Alexandra & Chris

4Alexandra & Chris