Health

Art as a symbol of art and courage for breast cancer patients


For most women putting on a bra each day is a rote action, rarely though about.

Be it supportive or decorative, the bra is a universal sign of femininity.

For breast cancer patients, one of the most confronting elements of intensive treatment can be the simple fact that they no longer need to wear a bra.

Eastern suburbs artist Rebecca Litvan, is the daughter of a breast cancer survivor, who required a double mastectomy to fight the insidious disease.

“From the age of 12, I have watched my mum fight, with 12 gruelling surgeries, 26 rounds of chemotherapy and 29 sessions of radiotherapy,” explains Rebecca.

Noticing the change in how her mum perceived her own body, scarred from so many surgeries, bald due to chemotherapy and less feminine due to the mastectomies, Rebecca wanted to create a visual that represented the beauty she saw in her mum, before and after her treatments.

Beauty and the Breast, currently exhibiting at Sydney Breast Clinic, explores Rebecca’s mother’s journey with breast cancer in a vivid and compelling way.

“Utilising mum’s mastectomy bras as a canvas, my aim was to transform a negative association into something beautiful, as a direct representation of mum,” said Rebecca.

The striking pieces, adjourning the walls, for all Sydney Breast Clinic patients to admire, are bountiful in colour and flair.


Rebecca explains that each bra represents a specific story.

“What I found interesting when learning about mum’s disease was that, under a microscope, the cancer takes a colourful and compelling form, I wanted to represent this through my work. Even in darkness there is beauty,” explains Rebecca.

Sydney Breast Clinic, Clinical Director and breast surgeon Dr Elisabeth Rippy explains that as a diagnostic clinic, most patients do not have breast cancer, however the strong symbolism for women is much appreciated by the patients

“Many of our patients have commented about the strong, powerful statements Rebecca’s art makes and are delighted to have something beautiful to look at whilst they wait,” explains Dr Rippy.

Rebecca’s work can be found at www.beclitvan.com


Did you know?

Sydney Breast Clinic where our focus is providing our patients with bespoke breast care.

Recognising that there is generally a high level of anxiety when it comes to breast testing, we provide a unique same-day results service for our patients.

Through our market leading Triple Test approach we are able to provide a level of care dependent on our patients' individual needs.

The three components test is used for screening and diagnostic services, however not all patients will need to undertake all tests.

www.sydneybreastclinic.com.au