Artists join forces to confront the silence around mental health in artistic communities.
The conversation surrounding mental health issues is gradually changing. From Prince Harry to Cara Delevingne, the stigma against an issue that affects many people of all demographics is slowly but surely being challenged. While the art world – from fashion designers to musicians to visual artists – are often seen as the most vocal when it comes to challenging taboo topics, a group of artists are joining forces to confront the issue of mental health stigma as part of a 10-day exhibition.
From August 10th to 20th, a host of work from creative minds, such as Tim Noble, one half of an artistic duo with Sue Webster, British designer Liam Hodges and film-maker Akinola Davies, to name but a few, will take to the arches beneath Waterloo station to transform House of Vans into the “All In: The Mind” exhibition. In aid of mental health charity, Mind, the multi-media display depicts the artists’ respective individual experiences with mental health issues, an issue deep in collective consciousness.
Filmmaker Akinola Davies Jr’s – otherwise known as ‘Crackstevens’ – contribution to the exhibition, a live recording, explores coping mechanisms, triggers, perceptions in an honest, open conversation about mental health in creative spaces with DJs, artists and music producers on his NTS radio show. Meanwhile, Central Saint Martin’s graduate and designer A Sai Ta delves deep into psychology, drawing on the works of Carl Jung and exploring human thought processes. Audience participation is encouraged, as the title suggests, with his fabric installation Takeaway designed for onlookers to take one of his 150 hanging shirts emblazoned with a letter of the word ‘MIND’ as part of an investigation into individuation.
The work of Liam Hodges, known for his graphic prints and nonconformist menswear which examines masculinity, displays the A1 print, I’m OK!, also featured in his SS17 menswear collection, which “[explores] the feeling of inadequacy when continually being expected to produce more creative work season after season whilst also growing a business. In reality, sometimes it isn’t about striving for perfection but just accepting what is best for the moment,” he says.
Other artists featured in the show include Margot Bowman, Suzannah Pettigrew, Gaika, James Miessi, Celia Hempton and Tom Mattison.