A poppy is a miracle of beauty, often bearing a powerful opiate, that has become iconic for war. It was first observed during the Napoleonic War that war-ravaged land would blossom with blood red poppies. John McCrea’s famous World War I poem, ‘In Flanders Fields’, popularized this phenomenon. Walker-Fitzpatrick photographs these blooms to move them beyond the stereotypical views, by portraying them as a desire for peace rather than for ‘violent addictions’. This work is dedicated to the 90th anniversary of the end of the First World War—"the war to end all wars"—and to the beginning of the "acceptance of the unacceptable".
Lesley Walker-Fitzpatrick’s career has successfully spanned a number of artistic disciplines. Her photographic work has been shown in Toronto, Stratford, and Ottawa, Ontario, as well as Rochester, New York. She was an amanuensis to her late brother, the inspiring poet John C. Walker, who was a quadriplegic and mute. Walker-Fitzpatrick toured Europe, the Mid East and Canada as a magician and dancer. She is a drama and movement artist and teacher, specializing in anti-war, social justice and environmental themes. She has been the recipient of the YMCA Canada Peace Medal, the Du Maurier Search For Stars award, the Ontario Arts Council award, the Stratford Shakespeare Festival Guthrie Award, and the Dorothy Shoemaker Literary Award.