Drawing inspiration from the books that make us cry

What books have made you cry?

As part of a participatory art project, Linda Duvall and Alana Moore are asking the public to submit their picks and then they'll draw the cover.

The book that inspired this project was Maria Campbell's Halfbreed. Linda Duvall told CBC's Saskatchewan Weekend that she started crying while reading the book on an airplane.

"It wasn't subtle sobs; it was crying profusely," Duvall said.

She said she doesn't know exactly what it was about the book that made her cry but she left the plane a different person.

"All I know is that I got on that plane and the book took over."

Books that heal

Submitted by Alana Moore and Linda Duvall

For Alana Moore, the book that comes to mind is All About Love by bell hooks.

"I was with family when I was reading it and it just brought up a lot of harsh truths from my upbringing and what love means today in our society and kind of how I've suppressed it a lot," Moore said.

The book started a process of healing for her.

"It's interesting that I can relate and cry while I'm reading a book but I really struggle to like cry in real life," Moore said.

Moore said she has found that many people connect with the concept for the project while Duvall said the project has given her a new appreciation for the impact books can have on people.

"I think I've come to value literature and particularly these books that are so moving because of the way they come into all these people's lives," she said.

A crying chorus

The project is part of an artist residency at Bridges Art Movement and runs until Oct. 24 when they'll have a closing event that will include a "crying chorus" and readings in partnership with Gordon Tootoosis Nīkānīwin Theatre.

Duvall said the crying chorus brought up conversations about what it means to cry publically and how one cries, as well as the relationship between crying and trauma.

She said the actors draw upon memories that "just hurt a little bit" to bring up tears, rather than the worst trauma they've experienced.

You can submit a book title via email to bamsaskatoon@gmail.com or you can go in person to the BAM studio in the Drinkle Mall on 3rd Avenue South during open studio hours weekend afternoons from 1-5 p.m. and Thursdays from 3-6 p.m.