Here at Cocreate Arts & Health one of our big missions is to help underrepresented artists to create and exhibit their work. We are delighted to announce that we are currently supporting our first exhibition: Stigma 2020 – to be held at The Artworks in Halifax during Mental Health Awareness month – May 2020.

The exhibition will run from Saturday 16th May until Friday 22nd May with an invitation only opening night on the Friday 15th. Get in touch now to reserve your spot!

Stigma 2020

Stigma is to be an exhibition showing the work of local and international artists – all of the work exhibited has one common theme – it has been created in order to elicit conversations around mental health, mental health issues and to break the stigma surrounding Mental Illnesses – these are incurable hidden illnesses that many of our artists have yet these are still surrounded by Stigma – as are mental health issues – especially for men. 

We are an artist group with a committee of 6. We are a mixture of professional artists, and community artists. Some of us have Mental Illnesses, some of whom experience issues with their own mental health and others who simply have an interest in how the arts can open debate around mental health. 

The exhibition is a show of work created by 28 artists. Because of our passionate belief in being fully inclusive and the  notion that ‘Art is for everyone’ and not just those of us who have been able to have access to higher education, art school and other professional opportunities – we decided not to have a ‘selection process’ – we simply put a call out for people who identify as ‘An Artist’ and also as using their art to end the stigma surrounding mental health. Therefore this show is a celebration of how the arts is catharsis for many – not just the privileged few. Our artists are self selecting the work that will be shown. For people with mental health problems – this is an invaluable opportunity – as oftentimes many of us face stigma surrounding our artwork and also surrounding professional opportunities. Some of the work in the show highlights these barriers we face. 

Some artists will be creating new work for the show, others are showing previously exhibited pieces and several are submitting work that were created purely as personal catharsis – and therefore helped them to get through a bad episode with their own mental health. This exhibition will hopefully not only have a big impact upon the artists involved but also the local community. 

The Committee is made up of several artists all with different backgrounds. 

Tim Burgess is an artist who specialised in drawing and applied arts, since completing his degree in 2009 he has worked in a variety of mediums focussing on portraying emotions currently surrounding situations and events that can affect peoples mental health through the mediums of illustration and surrealism. Tim decided to put on this exhibition as he lost a cousin to suicide late last year and is determined to break the stigma surrounding mental health issues with a special focus on mental health in men. 

Paulo Duarte Filipe is a Portuguese artist and movie director. In 2014 his short movie ‘Filipe’ telling the story of a person with schizophrenia was selected by the Cannes Festival, SFC. 

Tasleema Alam is a British Bangladeshi artist working internationally. Alongside creating her own work she also delivers teaching and design projects and workshops. 

Ruth Hart is currently completing her MA in fine art. Her work is about mental health and the associated personal experiences she has day to day. 

Jennyanne Smith is an Autoethnographic Sculptor and Spoken Word Poet  has 10 years experience working with community groups, in schools and in galleries such as The Hepworth Wakefield, Yorkshire Sculpture Park and The Stanley and Audrey Burton Gallery at the University of Leeds – she is currently applying for grant funding to allow her to make work for the exhibition in which she explores her own personal experiences with Bipolar Disorder and to potentially run workshops/ engage with the local community and/or local schools during or leading up to the event.

On our opening night we will have spoken word and performance art and we will be exhibiting a range of sculpture, 2D and installation works throughout the show with scheduled performances occurring at specific times during the week. 

Do you want to be involved in Stigma 2020? If so get in touch.

Email: cocreatearts@gmail.com

Tel: 077 93 02 00 00 

SM: @cocreate_arts

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