Drawing together

A couple of years ago Deborah Aguirre Jones  began a project working with women experiencing mental health problems in Bristol, where she lives. Supported by a local organisation, Creativity Works, she invited the participants to make drawings to be given to local women artists, who would make a drawing in exchange. Over a period of weeks, … Continue reading Drawing together

Arts outreach programmes: self-development or social instruction?

On 7 November, I took part in a symposium about cultural mediation in Basel, organised by Pro Helvetia with Migros. It marked the end of a four year programme supporting the development of outreach programmes in Swiss cultural institutions. The lively day was oversubscribed and included valuable contributions from Lois Hetland (on arts education research), … Continue reading Arts outreach programmes: self-development or social instruction?

An even break for young artists

Three months ago, I agreed to make a ‘digital postcard’ for the engage conference, which takes place in Cardiff today and tomorrow. It was a mistake: saying something useful (or even engaging) in three minutes to camera is not a skill I possess. My estimation of local TV reporters and documentary presenters grew as I … Continue reading An even break for young artists

Dementia Friendly Arts

Dementia seems to be replacing cancer as the unmentionable disease. Until quite recently, people were reluctant even to use the word ‘cancer’, a fearful reticence that surely increased suffering and preventable deaths. Today, Professor June Andrews, of the Stirling Dementia Services Development Centre (DSDC), says people would rather learn that they have cancer than dementia. … Continue reading Dementia Friendly Arts