A Mental Spaghetti 2016, here’s to the future!

2016, despite its infamy as a problematic and troublesome year, brought us many positives and much pleasure in the form of large scale group exhibitions, our first ‘Spaghetti School’ residency at Free Space Gallery, and working with some of our favourite comrades on exciting new projects designed to spark debate and question closed answers.

We worked as part of the Roving Diagnostic Unit (see photo, right), for Bobby Baker’s Daily Life Ltd., which saw us carrying out performances and workshops at the William Morris Gallery, Vestry House Museum and the Wellcome collection, for the Diagnosing Diagnosis symposium to accompany their latest exhibition, ‘Bedlam’. The workshops were designed to make people think about diagnosis and what it means. Our workshop, A Diagnostic Portrait of…, had participants team up to draw large scale portraits of their patients (objects in situ at Vestry House) using only character descriptors.

Our own exhibition output last year was bumper – we had a large group show to kick things off at Menier Gallery, followed by two more exhibitions in London, co-curated with The Dragon Café and Uncooked Cultures, plus a co-curated exhibition with AIMS, at the Oxford Museum and Town Hall Gallery. Over 20o artists were promoted through these exhibitions, with many of them selling work and gaining further professional exhibitions through the exposure of our shows. To date, (since 2011), we have reached an audience of over 10,000 online, shown the work of over 200 artists to a physical audience of 1,000+, and worked closely with 10 artists to mentor and support their practice.

Workshops have covered printmaking, sculpture, collage, alternative ways of drawing, and a collaboration with artist and photographer, Catriona Gray, to deliver a series of photographic mixed media workshops at Free Space Gallery, Kentish Town. The photos below show collage work, the process of lumen exposure photography, and the final outcome of combining the lumen technique with printmaking. All workshops are free, supported by the ever excellent Kentish Town Improvement Fund and Free Space Gallery. Extra support in the form of volunteers comes from Clean Break.

Collage work by Alexandra at Spaghetti School Lumen exposure photography Lumen photo exposure combined with printmaking

2017 – onwards!

First up, January 23, we have a printmaking workshop at The Dragon Café for Broken Grey Wires. If you already know the Dragon Café, you’ll know that spaces are limited, and you must be registered with them to take part. The workshop starts at 3pm.

Next, we are over the moon to be working with the young people of Snowsfield Adolescent Unit at the South London and Maudsley Hospital. Work to start in February, and while it is only open to residents at SLaM, we will report back with our artistic endeavours.

Spaghetti School will be starting again in March, and continuing in 5 week blocks throughout the year. Keep your eye on the blog for news to come!

We’ve got loads of new artists to update you with, so make sure you are following the blog and all good social media outlets (you know the ones, Facebook, Twitter and Instagram) to keep up to date with who’s doing what.

Finally, Happy New Year, everyone!


Fenna Berry

We were recently contacted by Fenna Berry. Loving what we saw, we took time to go through her tumblr page. What we found astounded us – not only for the sheer amount of work on show – but for how accomplished the various styles and mediums are. From fine art painting, Manga-influenced comic narratives, design, to traditional and contemporary illustration. We urge you to not only look at our favourite selections here, but also take a look for yourself at Fenna’s tumblr page – she’s a ball of pure creative energy.

“I am Fenna, a conceptual/expressionist/surrealist artist, born in the USA in 1995. I am a self taught artist living with schizophrenia, using art as an outlet for therapy. I consider myself disabled because of my diagnosis, and do not work or go to school.

I make art nearly every day. It is one of the only activities that makes me feel safe and keeps me from panic. I truly cannot use my words to emphasise the importance of this. I’m not the best at saying stuff without specifically being asked questions  on specific things. I do not plan what I make, it just happens. Then I look and say “Wow, look at that” and repeat the process forever.

I currently reside in central Texas. Most of my works are made using surrealist techniques such as automatism. They are created with a highly personal concept in mind.”


Exhibition: What Goes On In the Mind

What: Exhibition, ‘What Goes On In the Mind’
When: June 4th – July 4th, Reception Drinks June 11, 2-4pm
Where: Oxford Town Hall Gallery, St. Aldate’s, OX1 1BX

Opening Drinks Reception, this Saturday, June 11th, 2-4pm. All welcome! Facebook Event Page

Arts organisations AIMS (Oxford) and Mental Spaghetti (London) are exhibiting work from 18 artists, 9 from London and 9 from Oxford, both emerging and established, all with lived experience of mental health and/or physical disabilities.

Work ranges from painting, illustration, textile and sculpture, and will give an invaluable insight into the relationship between art, health and wellbeing as communication whilst navigating through life.

All our artists have incredible life stories and will be sharing intimate accounts of experiences and emotions that many of us have experienced but have been reluctant to share.

Expect dream-like worlds, fond memories, autobiographical fantasy realms and the cataloguing of experience.

Artwork by Jason Randall

In addition to finished pieces, there will be sketchbooks, notations and illustrated diaries on display, offering an illuminating view of the creative journey from ideas to finished pieces.

Artists are showing new, never exhibited, pieces and existing work. This exhibition is also chance to see work from previous collections that have not been exhibited in years.

The exhibition runs from Saturday 4th June until Tuesday 4th July. A drinks reception will be held on Saturday 11th June, from 2-4pm, with a chance to meet and talk to the artists involved.

Full list of exhibiting artists:

AIMS artists
Terrentius Andersohn, Dennis Day, Augus Davidge, Alistair Franklin, Yvonne Mabs Francis, Jason Randall, Luna Rain, Anthony Tozer, Sarah Warren.

Mental Spaghetti Artists
Tim Bradford, Emma Duggan, Terence Wilde, Laura Greenway, John Moore, Li Williams, Mikey Georgeson, Marie-Louise Plum, Jan Arden.

Mental Spaghetti contact: email / @mentalspaghetti / http://www.mentalspaghetti.org
AIMS contact: email

What Goes On In the Mind
The Gallery
Oxford Town Hall
St Aldate’s

Opening times: Mon-Sat, 10am-5pm

Exhibition: Shared Insight

What: Exhibition, following a four-month collaborative residency
When: May 13 – 27, Private View 12th May
Where: Free Space Gallery, Kentish Town, London

Shared Insight showcases the work of artists Harrison Moore and Terence Wilde.

Harrison is a third year Central Saint Martins Fine Art Student and Terence is an artist associated with the Outside In project at Pallant House Gallery.

The two artists have been part of a four month residency at Kentish Town Health Centre, exploring shared insights of what it means to be artists working in contemporary London.

This exhibition, across two floors, shows their working methods, films, scripts, photographs, modified t-shirts and artworks created during their four months together.

Background to the residency

In 2014 Outside In worked with the University of Chichester to pair an Outside In artist with an MA Fine Art student to see how they could learn from each other in both life and in artistic practice. Such a fruitful relationship occurred that Outside In wanted to replicate it with other university students and Outside In artists.

The Kentish Town Health Centre approached Outside In about the possibility of a residency, and Outside In then approached Central Saint Martins to be part of the collaboration. Proposals were received from both current and alumni students from the Fine Art Department.

Harrison and Terence have got on really well, worked across many new disciplines and have developed their own artistic practice and ways of thinking. It seems that both artists will be leaving the process in a better mind set, but also as friends.

Blog address: www.sharedinsite.wordpress.com

Outside In blog article on the collaboration.

“Please join us to celebrate the work created during this time. Opening this evening, Thursday 12 May 6:30-9pm.”

Exhibition: Christmas Crackers

Hello! Friends in East London and Essex should definitely check this exhibition out, but no matter where you live, if you are up for travelling, then please try to make it down. This is a great opportunity to see service users’ work in an exhibition. Below is the press release and a link to the invitation to the Private View. I will be attending the PV and I hope to see you there!

“‘Christmas Crackers’ is brought to you by the members of Thinkarts.

Our winter exhibition is a platform of over 70 pieces of work both 2d and 3d. All of the work is handmade and a large majority of it will be for sale via CREST Waltham Forest. With Christmas nearing in why not pop along to the see if you can pick up an alternative present and support the members of Thinkarts.

Thinkarts was developed to offer arts-related events, projects and vocational opportunities for people who have experienced mental ill health.

In November 2011, responsibility for Thinkarts was transferred to CREST, a grass-roots community organisation with forty years’ experience of developing local services such as a mental health befriending service.

There is also a free coffee morning in the Gallery most Thursday to find out more about the coffee morning call the BLC directly on 020 8724 8710

If you would like to join the thinkarts mailing list or find out more about what we are doing and how to get involved then please contact Alan Horne
of CREST. alan.horne@crestwf.org.uk”

Exhibition Details:
At The Gallery, Ground Floor, Barking Learning Centre, 2 Town Square, IG11 7NB.
(I’m unsure of opening times, so please call the learning centre)

Link to the Private View (PDF – download invite to print)

For more information check out:
Barking Learning Centre Gallery


It was my intention when I started this blog to show all work that I am sent without it being juried or censored. However, some work may be contentious or triggering, and this is something I want to be able to protect my more vulnerable readers from. The work featured on this blog entry may be considered triggering so please do not read on if you are in a vulnerable place.
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Postcard Series Promoting Mental Health Art Show from Nick Egglington.

“Nick Egglington is a photographer and graphic designer from Adelaide South Australia. Having suffered from Bipolar and a mild form of Cerebral Palsy his whole life, his works are highly influenced by his experience of the world and focus heavily on bringing awareness of these conditions to the community.”

For more information, or to support his work, please visit his websites at http://www.grinagallery.com (where you can download some awesome wallpapers!) and http://www.ravingtees.com, or check out his blog grinagallery.tumblr.com for the latest articles on graphic design and photography.

Postcard Series Promoting Mental Health Art Show
Featured on the NSW CAG recovery in Art Exhibition flyer 2011
Nominated for the Collie Print Trust Graphic Design Award AGIdeas Melbourne 2009

I particularly like these wallpapers for Apple devices of the above image, “Life is a Blood Sport”.
Life Is A Blood Sport

More postcards in the series:

Creature Feature Illustrative Postcard Series

Promotional Illustration PostcardsOther works by Nick:

Handle With Care

Consumerism Editiorial Illustration