Dana Walrath, a writer, artist, and anthropologist, likes to cross borders and disciplines with her work. She is working on a sequel to her acclaimed graphic memoir Aliceheimer's titled Between Alice and the Eagle and on the libretto for the translation of Aliceheimer's into an opera. Her interactive installation The Book of Genocides was featured at the Southern Vermont Arts Center.
Those who can let go and trust and care for others
Words of Strength
Creating innovative combinations and connections
The current pandemic has rendered the social and political roots of sickness impossible to ignore. Reducing poverty across the lifecycle and shifting the narratives around all forms of cognitive diversity will change the experience of dementia globally.
Dana is working on a sequel to her graphic memoir Aliceheimer’s that will blend personal memoir with an anthropological discourse on the end of life, stigma, gender, labor flows, and dementia across the globe.
Linking with fellows from across the global Atlantic Fellow programs has led to new collaborations on narrative, the arts, justice, and health. Dana was delighted to have co-authored an “art of medicine” essay (Lancet 2019) with Dr. Brian Lawlor on the social change that dementia can set into motion.
To help overcome the fear and stigma surrounding all mind troubles in the United States, her work uses visual and verbal storyteliing to shift the dominant narratives and improve the lives of people living with dementia and other forms of cognitive diversity.
After years of using stories and art to teach medical students at the University of Vermont’s College of Medicine, she spent 2012–2013 as a Fulbright Scholar in Armenia completing Like Water on Stone, her award-winning verse novel about the Armenian genocide. Her graphic memoir, Aliceheimer’s about life with her mother, Alice, and dementia, was featured in The New York Times, the Los Angeles Review of Books, and on National Public Radio. Dana Walrath holds a PhD degree in anthropology from the University of Pennsylvania, an MFA degree in writing from Vermont College of Fine Arts, and a BA degree in visual arts and biology from Barnard College, Columbia University. After her mother and dementia moved in with her, she began her movement away from academia to her current work as a writer, visual artist, comics maker, anthropologist, speaker, and storyteller.