“I have been admitted to hospital. Please don’t worry, but call me when you can. Lots of love, D,P,O.”
It was always how he signed off – shorthand for Dad, Pete, Opa. Photographer Tim J. Veling would soon learn his father had been diagnosed with terminal lung cancer, with an estimated three months to live.
Tim and his father spent many hours together in those last, precious months and Dad, Pete, Opa is a record of that time. With wife Lizzie and infant daughter Frankie, a daily rhythm emerged. “We’d spend at least an hour with him, drinking coffee in the morning and a beer at night,” writes Tim. “Frankie would run around the room with crackers coated in Marmite and smear dirty fingerprints all over Dad’s furniture. ‘You are the light of my life,’ he would tell her.”
Heartbreaking, raw and honest, Dad, Pete, Opa is a reflection on death and relationships between fathers and sons. It started as a particularly memorable show at CoCA in Ōtautahi Christchurch in 2016 and it’s now a limited-edition book. Order it now. “No one is perfect and I’m certainly no exception,” Pete told Tim one night, “but I’m proud to say I’ve spent my last years trying my best to be a good person.”
Dad, Pete, Opa by Tim J. Veling
Available from artbooks.xyz