Loved to Pieces

This spring I was asked to prepare a show for the Pingree School in South Hamilton, MA.  I wanted to try to find a way to involve the students in the art to help them feel more connected to the show and to make art a bit more accessible.  I’d had an idea mulling around in my head ever since I first saw my wife’s teddy bear, “Teddy.”  She told me a story about how some of her friends in high school (Pingree) once kidnapped Teddy and left  a trail of Polaroids to help her find him.  I always loved this story, but I forgot about it for a few years until I saw a friend of the family’s bear that had been mauled by her dog.  Despite the fact that it looks like a mutated Teddy Ruxpin, she still sleeps with the bear to this day.  This got me thinking – these poor stuffed animals are some of the hardest loved objects we can imagine.  But that hard lovin’ is exactly what gives them such great character!

So, I decided to seek help from the student body, the faculty, family and anyone who heard about the project.  All I needed was animals who had been loved hard- or “Loved to Pieces!”  I can assure you that each of these has a story as great as the looks on their faces.

I had a blast putting the project together and got a great response from the students, which was the most important thing.

Here was the card for the show:


These are the two bears that gave me the inspiration:


A collection of some of my favorites:


This dog’s name is Buster- he’s been all around the world.  His grandma knitted him that sweater.  The other guy came free with a box of Huggies.  Doesn’t have to be expensive to do the job!


Here is a grid of about 30 – I love seeing them all together!


Thanks again to all those who parted with their loved ones for me!

  • May 10, 2009 - 5:07 pm

    Amie - 2down; 6 right: Snuffles. I had one when I was 5. I jumped off of the bed & cracked my head on the radiator. I had to get 14 stitches above my right eye. clutching my Snuffles & crying hysterically, the doctor got the job done. When we left the hospital both snuffles & I had big bandages on our heads. I forgot all about that until I saw this picture. Thanks Ned.

  • May 10, 2009 - 6:09 pm

    erica - wow, i LOVE this idea and you did such a great job 🙂

  • May 10, 2009 - 8:23 pm

    Don Mamone - Love this project. Very creative and well done!


  • May 31, 2009 - 9:55 pm

    Mark Higgins - Ned, a truly inspiring project and very thoughtful and well done!

  • April 30, 2012 - 8:09 am

    Ipswich Photography+Writing Workshops - What a sweet project that we can all relate to. Love the pairing of the written story with your beautiful photographs.

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