Congratulations to our Team Member Lisa Reeve on Getting a job with Solent Mind Portsmouth Support & Recovery Service

Congratulations to our Team Member

Lisa Reeve on Getting a job

with Solent Mind

Portsmouth Support & Recovery Service

Lisa Reeve

Lisa is now part of the Solent Mind Portsmouth Support & Recovery Service and will be facilitating sessions and programmes at the Solent Recovery College (SRC), Highbury College. As a Peer Support Worker.

As a Photographer, Visual Artist, SFX Make-up Artist, Animal Rights Activist, Mental Health Campaigner and our Artistic Projects and Campaign Director you may be thinking, what can’t Lisa do? Well in our humble opinion Lisa can do anything she sets her mind to and has the full support of ASLI.

Lisa will facilitate training sessions for people with mental health problems.

lisa reeveAs well as their family, carers and friends, together with workers from Solent NHS Adult Mental Health.

The programmes cover three themes

• Understanding recovery

• Developing knowledge and skills

• Moving forward

 

Lisa’s Main Responsibilities:

• Working alongside colleagues from Solent NHS AMH to deliver an agreed programme of recovery focussed learning

• To help student learners mange their own recovery and help them set learning goals

• To model personal responsibility, self-awareness, self-belief, self-advocacy and hopefulness

• Through the learning programme draw on the lived mental health experience and expertise of students as a way of increasing awareness of recovery

• To offer individual learners opportunities to discuss personal recovery goals, both short and long term

• To signpost learners to other services when appropriate to meet their recovery goals, including encouraging learners to use learning credits gained at SRC as a stepping stone to further study or vocational training.

• To support learners to identify and overcome fears about learning within a relationship of empathy and trust

• To create and maintain professional supportive relationships with all members of staff, with other professionals and agencies to enhance recovery.

• To provide peer support if and when needed on an ad hoc basis.

• To record all contacts with learners in the case notes and on appropriate electronic customer recoding systems like RIO system if required

• To support colleagues in promoting a recovery orientated environment by identifying recovery focused learning activities

• To ensure attendance at all Solent Mind essential training

• To participate in group or individual supervision, appraisal and performance development and identify own development needs, acting as an effective Recovery and team member

• Maintain a working knowledge of current trends in mental health, recovery and peer support

• To contribute to the ongoing development of the Portsmouth Recovery and Support service • Work within Solent Mind policies and procedures • All employees have a duty and responsibility for their own health and safety and the health of safety of colleagues, patients and the general public.

Lisa Reeve

We are so proud of Lisa and for her ability to use her own mental health issues to help others and for her strength in taking on this challenge. We also think this is a perfect time to announce this job success as it is still our ongoing mental health campaign at the moment!

Lisa Reeve

 

The skills which Lisa will also acquire further skills in this role which will better serve ASLI in our understanding of mental health services and support in the UK, to better assist our ASLI artists who suffer from mental illness and our team members. So please join us in celebrating this achievement that is so well deserved by Lisa and if you would like to get in contact with Lisa, to congratulate her personally or to find out more please follow these links:

Lisa’s Website 

Like Lisa’s Facebook Page

Follow Lisa on Twitter @LisaReeveArt

Follow Lisa on Instagram

Lisa Reeve

 

 

 

WANTED!! Bloggers to write for our blog – Recruiting Now! Interested in being a monthly guest blogger?

Would you be interested in being a monthly guest blogger?

With your very own blog as part of ART SAVES LIVES INTERNATIONAL?

 

ASLI QUOTE

 

We are looking for enthusiastic, creative and compassionate people to join our team as monthly guest bloggers/feature writers. We want you to be an author on our website with your own login, author name and in charge of your very own blog on the following subjects (listed below) with the artistic freedom to make it your own! If you think this opportunity is something you may be interested in, keep reading…

Remember when we say ART we mean all artistic expression, visual art, photography, creative writing, dance, theatre, film, poetry, music, crafts, anything under the umbrella of “the arts”.art quote ASLI

The blogger topics we are looking for are:
Reviewers and Critics of the following subjects:
A music reviewer
A visual art reviewer
A poetry reviewer
A film reviewer
A photography reviewer
A theatre reviewer
A dance reviewer
A literature reviewer
We would want you to review at least 4 artists in your chosen category each month, they would need to be representative, inclusive, in-keeping with our mission and inspiring. You will need to interview artists you are reviewing via email, phone, skype or in person.
Local Artist (Portsmouth/Southampton areas) reviewer 
This would be either for both areas or we could have two bloggers for the separate areas. We would want you to review local artists from all artistic disciplines, abilities and would need these artists to be interviewed and reviewed.
Women in art 
A blog about women in all artistic disciplines from all over the world, showing women using art and creativity to better women’s rights and the world we live in.
Men in art
A blog about men in all artistic disciplines from all over the world, showing men using art and creativity to better men’s rights and issues and the world we live in.
Save the world with art
This would be for the eco-warrior blogger, we want you to talk about the issues facing our planet, what can be done about it and artists of all disciplines who use their art to educate and engage others about this issue.
Animal Rights and Activism through art
This is for the animal lover, campaigner and activist. We want you to discuss how we can all (not just vegans and vegetarians) become cruelty free, more aware of animal rights and what animals face in the world today and find artists discussing this through their artistic expression.
Art Therapist Blog
We are looking for art therapists and creative therapists who can discuss the benefits of art for better mental and physical health, with exercises, tips and guidance as well as all the latest news in this area.
Art as Activism
We want a blog which simply finds all manner of artists who use their art as activism to better the world in any
way.
Political and Satirical Art: Comment on the world
We would like a blog written about current political issues around the world and the artists that use their artistic expression to inform, educate, engage and express this.
Comic strip artist
We would love a few comic strip artists to create a specific comic strip for ASLI
Artist Tips and techniques
We would love artists who would like to blog about their skills and techniques used to create art. In a kind of how to or workshop style, this can also be a vlog (video log) which can show a demonstration on a specific skill, such as photography, pottery, painting, drawing, journalling… If its creative we want to learn how to do it!
Art Journalling
We would like to types of art journalling blogs, one by an artist who would share their art journal and progress and secondly a “how to” art jornal blog, with tips and ideas on how to journal with art.
Your countries art scene
As we have a large international following from all over the world we would love people who are from countries other than Britain to blog and write articles about their own local art scene in their country. We would also like bloggers in other languages too, so we can share your blog with our English speaking followers and engage NEW followers from your country.
ASLI QUOTE
We would send you an authors invite to our website/blog and then we would pick a date you publish on each month and this would be your deadline, then you can upload it and publish it yourself on our blog.
You can then link your own stuff, such as website and social media links to our site.
This is obviously a great opportunity and great for the CV, especially if you are a budding blogger, journalist or just love writing and wish to make this into a career.
As a non-profit organisation this would be a non-paid voluntary position.
But with our large following, subscribers and supporters you would have a keen audience.

How to apply for this position:

  • Send us an original article or blog post you have written before and then a second article/blog post about the chosen subject you wish to be a guest blogger for.
  • Send us any links to your websites, published works and social media sites
  • Tell us why you wish to be involved with us and our mission (no more than 100 words)
  • Tell us a date within a 30 day month that you wish to have as your deadline and publishing date
  • Send us a relevant CV
  • Send everything to MD/Editor and chief Charlotte Farhan at artsaveslivesinternational@gmail.com
  • Set up a wordpress account and send us your username so we can invite you as an author if we choose you. (if you do not have a wordpress account this is OK, we can still consider you, but you will have to be published though one of us (ASLI team members) as you will not be able to have your own log in)

ASLI QUOTE

We look forward to receiving your applications and thank you for engaging in our mission and aim.

If you have any questions please do not hesitate to ask?

Also please share this with anyone you feel would like to get involved.

Create Change and remember art saves lives! 

 

 

 

We love our Supporters! Show us your support #artsaveslivesinternational

Some of the team and our amazing supporters!

 

Do you support Art Saves Lives International‬ ?
Show your support by creating an image like this with our hash-tag

#‎ArtSavesLivesInternational

and we will add you to our gallery

Thank you

ASLI’s Mental Health Awareness Fair and Event – The low-down

 

ASLI’s Mental Health Awareness Fair and Event 

The low-down

 

ASLI Info graphic

On Saturday the 30th of May ASLI had a fabulous day of engaging with our local community and our event was a great success. The whole premiss of our day was to raise awareness about our campaign MENTAL ILLNESS, HEALTH AND RECOVERY, to showcase some local artists who use their art to deal with their own mental health struggles, to give back to the community by having a FREE table-top sale and swap shop and by inviting local crafters and artisans to sell their beautiful creations along side us in solidarity. Oh and how could we forget CAKE, there was lots of cake!

The ASLI team and our ASLI volunteers pulled together so that our guests as well as ourselves, enjoyed a day of positive engagement and community.

See our Gallery of all the event photos – Click Here!!

 

We would like to thank:

The Oasis Centre – Not only was the centre and amazing venue, the staff were so accommodating and supportive. They gave us the entire venue for free, we asked if we could donate to their chosen charity and they chose a local animal sanctuary.

The Exhibiting Artists – Louise Tomkinson, Michelle Morgan, Chris WebbPhilippa Newman , Andreea Stan, Lisa Reeve and Charlotte Farhan

Our Stall Holders – Lisa TaylorJames WaterfieldPaul Brian, Philippa Newman, Debra Carter and Emily Murphy

We will be featuring all these amazing people and their talents in separate blog posts so keep an eye out!

PhototasticCollage-2015-05-29-12-14-07

We made lots of amazing connections with our local community, including mental health charities and art projects and communities! We will be building on these connection in the coming month, more details to follow…

Plus we had lots of local artists sign up to get involved as well as local residents signing up to our blog and newsletter.

All in all a very happy event! And to top it off we raised just under £200 for ASLI to continue to do what it does best, using art as a tool to create change and save lives.

Be sure to check out:

  • our Gallery of event photos taken by our two ASLI photographers Lisa Reeve,  Charlotte Farhan and Iain Turrell
  • our gallery of our exhibition on mental health and artists in Portsmouth at the event
  • our shout outs to our craft and art stall holders

Thank you xxx

ASLI INFO GRAPHIC By Charlotte Farhan

 

 

 

Artists Wanted for Portsmouth Event – Raising awareness for Mental Health

Artists Wanted for Portsmouth Event

Raising awareness for Mental Health

 

ASLI are holding an event on the 30th of May in Portsmouth, UK, at The Oasis Centre  

On Saturday – 11.00am – 4.00pm

Our Event is in aid of our campaign to raise awareness about Mental illness, health and recovery please follow this link to see more details.

We are looking for local artists, performers, musicians, comedians, dancers, art/craft stall owners and anyone who wishes to be involved with our organisation, campaign and event.

The event is going to be held over 3 rooms:

  • A swap shop and refreshments room
  • A gallery space for visual arts
  • An auditorium with stage for performances and stall holders

 

If you are interested please contact either:

Charlotte Farhan – artsaveslivesinternational@gmail.com

Lisa Reeve – lisareeveasli@gmail.com

 

 

 

Art, Mental Illness, Health and Recovery – Worldwide Call for Artists

HOW TO GET INVOLVED…

 

We are looking for artists and creatives from all disciplines from all over the world to be featured:

  • In our second issue of the ASLI Magazine
  • On our ASLI Blog
  • To be a guest blogger or feature writer
  • To get involved with our local event (UK Only)
  • To be featured in our on-line gallery
  • To raise awareness for ASLI in your local and worldwide communities.

As usual we want artists from the wide spectrum of “the arts”. Such as poetry, creative writing, dance, theatre, film, documentary, music, visual arts, photography, comedy, blogging, comic/graphic novels, crafts, fashion, textiles…. If it is creative we are interested.

We would like you to contribute submissions from these chosen topics:

  • Mental illness and your personal story
  • Stigma
  • Stereotypes about mental illness
  • Art and creative therapies
  • Highlighting specific psychiatric illnesses
  • Achieving mental health
  • Recovery
  • Medication and Treatment
  • Politics, society and mental illness

Also we would like to raise awareness for particular mental illness awareness months and weeks during the time period of our campaign:

Submission Guide Lines:

  • Please submit ONE piece of work for consideration (if you submit more than one we will look at your first one and choose you according to this)
  • This call out is open to: both men and women, all ages, worldwide and all abilities
  • State your artistic discipline/medium and chosen topic (If you submit outside the topics requested we will not be able to accept your submission at this time)
  • Please read about us first, see if you want to be part of our mission and make sure you understand who we are what we are about.
  • Do not just email a link (we will not follow it)
  • Remember we are a non-profit organisation
  • If you wish to submit in another language other than English we accept untranslated work in French and Arabic, all other languages must have an English translation attached.
  • If submitting creative writing please do not submit over 500 words and if your piece is longer submit a 500 word abstract
  • State if you are submitting to be: featured in on our ASLI Magazine or ASLI Blog, to be a guest blogger or feature writer, our on-line gallery, you wish to raise awareness for our campaign in your local area, want to fundraising, be involved with our local events (UK only – Portsmouth Based)
  • If you have any queries please contact artsaveslivesinternationl@gmail.com (we aim to get back to you within 48 hours depending on volume of submissions)

Submission Deadlines:

ASLI Magazine or ASLI Blog – submit by Monday the 15th of June

Guest feature writers and Bloggers – submit by Friday the 5th of June

To be featured in our on-line gallery – Open until the 5th of August

To raise awareness for ASLI in your local and worldwide communities – Open until the 5th of August

Being involved in our on-line campaign – Open until the 5th of August

Selection process:

We divide the entries into categories regarding the artistic discipline first such as; Visual art, photography, Performing art/Dance, Film/Documentary, Poetry, Creative Writing, Music…..

Each category is given to an ASLI team member and they then look at the submission criteria and divide your submissions further into the topics.

A select amount is chosen from each topic

And we try to be as representative as possible with our global range of submissions

Be part of the campaign on-line, get involved!!

Tweet us @ASLInonprofit :

Your images and videos of your work add #artsaveslivesinternational

If art has saved your life or you think art saves lives share your selfies telling us using these hash tags #ArtsSavesLives #ArtSavedMyLife #SupportASLI #artsaveslivesinternational

Or you can do this on Instagram the hashtags @artsaveslivesint

Look at all the artist who share with us on Instagram using our hashtag#artsaveslivesinternational 

We will then add you to our campaign gallery and share your involvement with our global audience making you part of the mission

Check out our #artsaveslivesinternational Gallery on our website

Take a look at last month’s:

ASLI Magazine

ASLI Blog

Issue One Campaign Gallery

 We can’t wait to engage with you all!

ASLI Quotes

Laura Ann Brady creates the song “Perform Your Rights” in response to abortion law in Ireland and the death of Savita Halappanavar

Laura Ann Brady creates the song “Perform Your Rights” in response to abortion law in Ireland and the death of Savita Halappanavar

Laura Ann Brady
Laura Ann Brady

 

Laura Ann Brady, 30, Dublin, Ireland. Laura’s main area of interest was initially theatre and acting, having studied Drama and Spanish at degree level as well as working for a number of years in stage management. Playing live music is something Laura has been involved in for the past three years, although her love of music has always been a huge part of her life.

What motivated you to deal with the subject of women’s rights in your art?

At the time when the whole Savita Halappanavar case happened, there was a huge emotional response from people in Ireland to it, and I wanted to try and capture that mood in a song as best I could, and maybe make people think a bit more about the subject.

Tell us why you chose this submission?

I felt that it was suitable in terms of the fact that it deals with issues surrounding a woman’s personal experience of herself and her world, and how women are very often sidelined in society, even a supposedly forward thinking country such as Ireland.

Listen To Perform Your Rights

 

Perform your Rights

Lyrics:

The bus will often pass

The place where she was born

But she won’t often think back

To that early afternoon

When she was coaxed and warmed into the world

Well when did words finally become words?

 

Lost evenings home from music school

and I remember the cold metallic steel of the spool of your thread

The way you emboss me on your jacket

You emblazon you perform your right

Well you were always at it

And it was just a habit

But you were always at it

 

You force her hand

You lead the way

Because she wouldn’t know

Where to go without you

 

She’ll trickle in

She’ll apologise

For everything she says

Was she always that way?

 

It’s not the way we do things here

It’s not the way we do things here

It’s not the way we do things here

 

She’ll trickle in

She’ll apologise

For everything she says

Was she always that way?

 

She’ll weigh it up

How much is it worth?

To be broken, to be bruised, to be her.

 

She’ll perform her right

She’ll perform you’re right

She’ll reform your rights

We’ll reform you’re right

Don’t conform you’re right, don’t conform your rights, we’ll reform our rights.

 

This is a song I wrote in response to the current laws pertaining to abortion in Ireland and the issues that correlate directly with these laws, such as having a child and giving that child up for adoption, travelling overseas for a termination, and teenage pregnancy.  Abortion is illegal in Ireland where a pregnancy has occurred by means of rape, incest or foetal abnormalities. The Catholic Church’s dwindling but continuing influence on Irish culture has a huge part to play in this. There are organisations in Ireland that actively campaign against safe and legal abortion for women in Ireland, something that is a basic human right,that is for a woman to have control over her own body and for her womb not to be seen as an incubator.

The song also touches on a woman’s perception of herself and the relationships she has with the people around her. The idea of ownership is also explored within the lyrics, the suggestion of men laying claim to a woman in a relationship, “the way you emboss me on your jacket.” and also the feeling that the woman’s voice isn’t being heard effectively;

“When did words finally become words?”

“She’ll trickle in, she’ll apologise for everything she says, was she always that way?”

The line “It’s not the way we do things here” is related to the response Savita Halappanavar

received when she requested a termination in Ireland in 2012.

http://www.rte.ie/news/health/2013/0410/380613-savita-halappanavar-inquest/

The song ends with a refrain asking women not to conform, and to keep on the campaign to try and reform the situation in Ireland.

Why have you chosen the medium you use for your art?

This is the medium that I use to voice myself on any issues affecting me. My music is a form of therapy if you will! Writing a song about something helps me figure out my thoughts on an issue.

Laura Ann Brady
Laura Ann Brady

 

What is your process when creating?

It depends but when something strikes me I will try and work on it straight away  if I can before it gets lost . The song usually comes first, with the lyrics taking longer for me, I find lyrics a challenge and there are usually many drafts of songs.

Who are you influenced by? What inspired you and your art?

I am influenced by the people, places and events that I encounter everyday. Everything inspires me, subconsciously and consciously.

Laura Ann Brady
Laura Ann Brady

 

What does feminism mean to you and do you consider yourself to be a feminist?

For me, yes of course I am a feminist as I believe in equality for women in every sense of the word. Feminism simply means to me the championing for a world where women have exactly the same rights to be entirely themselves in a society where very often we are unfortunately still expected to conform.

What made you want to get involved with our non-profit ART SAVES LIVES INTERNATIONAL mission?

A friend sent me on the link to your call for submissions and I wanted to get involved as I feel that art can help spread a positive message, in terms of opening up new ideas to people and giving a perspective on something that might not have been explored before.

Do you feel women have to conform to social norms and stereotypes to be taken seriously? Do you have any experiences of this?

I think people generally feel pressure to conform to social norms and stereotypes and I think it’s something that is difficult to avoid in modern society, where we are constantly barraged with other people’s lives, be it on the internet or TV. We all want to be accepted and loved. In certain countries I think women have to conform to social norms or they risk being shunned by their families and communities. This is something that is unfortunately prevalent in many parts of the world. It is a difficult topic to discuss in such a broad sense and the cultural context has a huge amount to do with it also.

Do you think that women and men are equal in today’s societies around the world? Have you any experience of this?

Women and men are not equal in all societies unfortunately. The fact that in Ireland in 2015 women still don’t have autonomous control over their own bodies is an example of how inequality is still something that women have to campaign against, even in supposed modern “forward thinking” countries.

What causes and world issues are you passionate about, campaign for, volunteer for etc…..?

I am passionate about freedom of speech, campaigning for positive body image and body acceptance, equality for all, equal marriage rights for all.

What does the statement ART SAVES LIVES mean to you and has art in anyway “saved” your life in any way?

Art Saves Lives is a positive affirmation in the fact that art really does save lives in my opinion. Art helps those who create it and those who experience it to deal with and work out issues in their lives, and is a hugely healthy way of releasing and unburdening yourself from an experience that you have had and may have affected you without even knowing it.

How can your art be used to create change and is this something you want for your art?

I would love for my songs to inspire positive change in the world. Who doesn’t want that! I will keep writing songs and hopefully they will touch the lives of the people that hear them. We are all writing our stories together and helping each other.

Laura Ann Brady
Laura Ann Brady

 

What are your goals as with your art?

My main goal with my music would be to touch the minds of the people that hear my songs and make a connection with them. If I can make one person feel less alone when they listen to my music I feel like I will have achieved my goal.

What is your next project or piece that you are working on?

I am currently in the process of recording my debut album which will be released in the autumn.

And is there anything you would like to add to your interview?

Just that I hope to keep making art,keep talking, keep trying, keep going!!!

If you would like to know more about Laura Ann Brady follow these links:

Facebook

Twitter

SoundCloud

 

Artist Deborah Brommer “Without art our world would be a cold and silent place”

Artist Deborah Brommer “Without art our world would be a cold and silent place”

 

Artist Deborah Brommer
Artist Deborah Brommer

 

Deborah Brommer,48, from Columbus, Ohio and Phoenix, Arizona

Born and raised in Columbus, Ohio, Deborah has loved art since she was a child and has been involved in theatre and applied art her whole life.  Deborah went to college at Ohio University in Athens, to study acting and ended up bouncing from major to major within the art school however by her father’s urging finally graduated with a Bachelor of Fine Art’s in Art History.

Here is our interview with Deborah:

What motivated you to deal with the subject of Empowerment in your art?

This piece was actually inspired by the Chelko Foundation which supports women’s freedom around the world and is on a mission to end their suffering.

Tell us why you chose this submission?

This piece is about the age old dichotomies of woman as goddess/slave, mother/whore, beauty/untouchable.  The stone age relic of the Venus of Willendorf is painted on the torso of the model representing the ancient reverence for women as creators of life, yet in our “advanced” modern times women are still expected to be the ones taking care of the home, hence the classic yellow rubber gloves.  Our society wants our women to have a lovely face and figure, to wear sexy lingerie, yet in some places they are still expected to keep their mouths shut when the men are speaking.  My piece shows our heroine wearing fishnet stockings yet her face is painted as though she’s wearing a “reverse burka”, where only her eyes are covered.  Her mouth is silenced by a bumble bee with the wings of a moth; the bee represents hard work and dedication and the moth is representative of transformation as well as the subtle meaning of always flying to the light which shows undying optimism.  Covering our model’s sex organs is a beautiful flower (an homage to feminist artist Judy Chicago) which is lovely and beckoning, yet from that same flower flows rivers of blood which shows our lunar biology which has kept women separated, and shunned, and proclaimed “dirty” in many societies, but is actually the literal life blood of our species.

Venus By Deborah Brommer This body painting shows the many dichotomies of women in the modern world and her place as goddess/slave, mother/whore, beauty/untouchable.  The Stone Age “Venus of Willendorf” is a reminder of the age old reverence of woman as creator of life, yet throughout time women have been virtually slaves to the men in their lives as is represented here by the yellow rubber gloves of housework.  We want our women to have a beautiful face, and a sexy demeanor, yet they must, in some societies cover up in public and keep quiet on matters of importance and we see that here with the strip across the eyes painted as a “reverse burka”.  Her mouth is silenced by a bumble bee with the wings of a moth; the bee represents hard work and dedication and the moth is representative of transformation as well as the subtle meaning of always flying to the light which shows undying optimism.  Covering our model’s sex organs is a beautiful flower (an homage to feminist artist Judy Chicago) which is lovely and beckoning, yet from that same flower flows rivers of blood which shows our lunar biology which has kept women separated, and shunned, and proclaimed “dirty” in many societies, but is actually the literal life blood of our species.
Venus By Deborah Brommer
This body painting shows the many dichotomies of women in the modern world and her place as goddess/slave, mother/whore, beauty/untouchable. The Stone Age “Venus of Willendorf” is a reminder of the age old reverence of woman as creator of life, yet throughout time women have been virtually slaves to the men in their lives as is represented here by the yellow rubber gloves of housework. We want our women to have a beautiful face, and a sexy demeanor, yet they must, in some societies cover up in public and keep quiet on matters of importance and we see that here with the strip across the eyes painted as a “reverse burka”. Her mouth is silenced by a bumble bee with the wings of a moth; the bee represents hard work and dedication and the moth is representative of transformation as well as the subtle meaning of always flying to the light which shows undying optimism. Covering our model’s sex organs is a beautiful flower (an homage to feminist artist Judy Chicago) which is lovely and beckoning, yet from that same flower flows rivers of blood which shows our lunar biology which has kept women separated, and shunned, and proclaimed “dirty” in many societies, but is actually the literal life blood of our species.

 

Why have you chosen the medium you use for your art?

I love the medium of body painting because the movement and emotion of a living person is added into the art, giving it a special kind of life.  I am attracted to body painting because it combines the colour and expressionism of my painting with living sculpture; it is applied art, sculpture, and theatre all in one.  I also find the impermanence of the art appealing, the fleetingness of the piece makes it more precious in a way, like a beautiful sunset, it is all the more sweet because it will soon fade away.

What is your process when creating?

I usually work with a theme of some sort, something I want to say, or a feeling I want to convey and I will research some visual ideas that I want to include, sketch out where the different elements will go on the body, and then the painting begins.

Who are you influenced by? What inspired you and your art?

Because I have a background in Art History, there are many artists that inspire me, I especially love expressionism and I love to incorporate a lot of colour in my work.  I am often inspired by nature, by music, by performance, and by cultures from around the world.  One of my biggest influences is the performances of Cirque Du Soleil.

What does feminism mean to you and do you consider yourself to be a feminist?

I do think that I am a feminist, but I don’t know that feminists would agree.  I am a strong minded, confident, and outspoken woman and I believe in equality for all people, but I really love the feminine side of womanhood, I like being a girly girl at times, I enjoy the trappings of being a female.  I embrace the differences between men and women, I think that makes us interesting.

What made you want to get involved with our non-profit ART SAVES LIVES INTERNATIONAL mission?

I live in such a progressive country and was raised by a family who empowered me to be who I wanted to be, that I never considered for one moment growing up that there was anything I couldn’t do, and when I am faced with the reality that that isn’t the norm for all women it is a shock and a disappointment.   I think it’s important to show the world that every woman has the right to be who she wants to be.

Do you think that women and men are equal in today’s societies around the world and do you feel women have to conform to social norms and stereotypes to be taken seriously?

I know for a fact that women and men are not equal in many areas around the world.  I am a prolific traveller and I have had experiences in countries where there was a severe double standard for men and women.  The experience that stands out most to me was a time in Morocco where I left a public bath and was forced to wear a scarf over my hair because it was wet, when I asked about what the reasoning was it was explained to me that wet hair means that you’ve just bathed and if men were to see my wet hair they wouldn’t be able to refrain from imagining me in the bath which would arouse them and then I wouldn’t be safe.  I have been to a few countries where if men cause harm to women it is almost always considered the woman’s fault for somehow instigating it merely by her appearance.  The beauty of women should not be hid or feared it should be adored!

What causes and world issues are you passionate about, campaign for, volunteer for etc…..?

My biggest issue is the lack of education on the importance of breastfeeding around the world.  A great disservice has been done to women and children in developing countries when they are given formula to feed their babies.  This formula has to be mixed with clean water, which is often hard to come by, and once the mother stops nursing and her milk no longer comes she has no choice but to continue giving formula, and the supply may now be getting low so it gets diluted even more with precious water and the babies suffer from malnutrition.

What does the statement ART SAVES LIVES mean to you and has art in anyway “saved” your life in any way?

Art reveals emotion and ideas and desires in a way that words cannot.  Art can communicate to your core the feelings it’s creator wants you to experience. Without Art our world would be a cold and silent place.  There are many people in the world who have no voice and Art can be a way to speak when everything else is telling you to “shut up”.

How can your art be used to create change and is this something you want for your art?

I think my art in particular can create change because it is painted on the naked body.  It forces many people out of their comfort zones yet helps to show that the human body can be admired as a work of art without being a sex object.  It allows for beauty and soulfulness without shame.  Also, because the art incorporates the human body it is much more expressive and emotional which can really speak to people in a way that other art forms may not.

What are your goals as with your art?

I want the world to fall in love with body painting and want to place it in their homes.  I want people to feel so intrigued and enamoured that they want to have themselves body painted, and then they will find the art and beauty within themselves.  It is amazing to see the transformation in people when they are painted for the first time; the timidness and discomfort are always replaced with pride and awe.

What is your next project or piece that you are working on?

I’m currently working on some ideas for pieces inspired by the American Southwest, I have recently started to spend quite a bit of time out here and the vast landscapes and amazing colours are quite an inspiration to me!

If you would like to know more about Deborah Brommer:

Links:

 

ASLI ART PROJECT IN COLLABORATION WITH BURSLEDON HOUSE

Art Saves Lives International is excited to announce its first collaboration and art project with the young residents and staff at Bursledon House Hospital in Southampton, UK. The project was inspired by ASLI’s Charlotte Farhan. She is now leading the project, helped by our talented Artist in Residence, Lisa Reeve.

Bursledon House provides a lifeline to young kids and teenagers with severe, complex and chronic medical problems. Using a caringly structured programme of treatment in a relaxed, non-medical setting, Bursledom House supports, cares for and manages the treatment of its vulnerable young residents (aged 0-16). The NHS-run organisation places paramount importance on residents’ physical, psychological, educational and social needs.

ASLI has been invited by Bursledon House to perform an inclusive and inspirational art project with its young residents. ASLI Artistic Director Charlotte Farhan and ASLI Artist in Residence Lisa Reeve were inspired to perform this project due to their own personal struggles with mental illness. They believe art has played a restorative, vitally important role in helping them manage Borderline Personality Disorder.

For Charlotte, this project is especially close to her heart. At the tender age of fifteen, Charlotte was placed in an adolescent psychiatric unit and attended a residential school in an NHS governed centre similar to Bursledon House. She remembers how scary this chaotic period of her life was for her, and how school was the last thing on her mind.

But institutions like Bursledon House are essential in providing structure and routine for sick and vulnerable young children and adolescents during a difficult, traumatic time of great need. Charlotte found being able to still attend art, English and History classes a real release from her daily treatment. She relished the opportunity to learn these subjects, which provided relief and inspiration, instead of purely focussing on continuously feeling unwell.

This ASLI project promotes holistic creative healing through art therapy. Each child is being encouraged and motivated to produce their very own ‘Personality Portrait’: an abstract style of portrait that reflects the inner core of a person: their energy, vitality and individuality, which forms their root personality, based on experience, fears and desires. Celebrating individuality is especially important for children who have perhaps already identified themselves as “sick children”. Art therapy takes children outside of their comfort zones and transient realities, helping them shape the futures they want.

As a skilled SFX make-up artist and photographer, Lisa is also relishing painting the children’s faces for drama, poetry and dance performances, as the photographs below beautifully illustrate.

The project, lasting several months, is leading to a public exhibition of the children’s personality portraits in July 2014. Charlotte also intends to create a large mural painting at the hospital and Lisa will create a storyboard of photography documenting the entire experience. The exhibition will include talks about the work of Bursledon House and ASLI. We also hope to have a band, spoken word artists and an art auction.

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BURSLEDON BLOG: PART ONE

As ASLI artists Charlotte and Lisa arrived at Bursledon House, both were nervous and eager to make a good impression. They first met with one of the teachers, Holly. Her warmth, empathy and enthusiasm instantly made our artists feel at home and welcomed to the Bursledon family.

After meeting most of the staff, including teachers and nurses, the young residents trickled into the classroom to greet Lisa and Charlotte. They played an introduction circle game involving a ball. Charlotte and Lisa, who both share Borderline Personality Disorder, frequently struggle with social situations like this. But in Bursledon’s supportive environment and inspired by the bravery of the young people they met, Charlotte and Lisa were able to quickly overcome these fears and felt very privileged and grateful for the opportunity to be there.

Next, they visited the hemodialysis ward and met an inspirational young girl who was a keen artist herself. Charlotte and Lisa sat with her for a while and discussed her interests. The girl was delighted to hear about Charlotte and Lisa’s reason for being there and how she had an opportunity to create her own portrait. When they mentioned her work would be included in a gallery exhibition, the young girl’s elation was overwhelmingly moving.

As the visit drew to a close, Charlotte and Lisa were sad to leave, but excited to get the next stage of the project underway.

 

BLOG: PART TWO – THE PROJECT BEGINS!

During Charlotte and Lisa’s subsequent visit to Bursledon House, they explained the concept of a personality portrait, providing examples. Artists have always been fascinated by the concept of creating self-portraits as a means of better understanding themselves – the fusion of the outer and inner self. Our artists stressed to the children that there is no right or wrong when it comes to art. Art is THEIR opportunity for self-expression. Charlotte had also pre-compiled a list of thought-provoking questions to encourage the children to focus on their individuality and inspire them creatively with their own personality portraits:

1. List your 4 favourite colours and any colours you dislike. Ask yourself why you picked these colours?

2. Consider your best and your worst features – and why?

3. How would you describe yourself in two sentences?

4. Who are your idols and what do you admire about them?

5. What is your favourite style? What do you like in design, fashion, décor and graphics, what visually stimulates you?

6. Pick 3 (of each) representing you: animals, places in the world, food and books.

7. What are your passions and hobbies in life?

8. What are your fears and dreams?

9. When was your best day and worst day, what happened?

10. How do you think others see you, and how is it different to how you see yourself?

 

“In self-portraiture the artist does not have to be concerned about pleasing anyone but him or herself. Self-portraits can allow the artist to be open and receptive to the self, which is an important component of therapeutic growth.”

–Professor Simone Alter-Muri

By now, the children were utterly engaged and very eager to get started. Creativity flowed out of them and their ideas were incredibly powerful.

Finlay (6), the youngest in the group, was movingly frank. When asked why he had drawn a face with tears, he simply answered, “It is because I am very sensitive.” This kind of honesty was refreshing and insightful.

Charlotte sat with a young girl called Bethany (11). Wise beyond her years, Bethany displayed a determination that could take her wherever she wishes to go in the future. She told Charlotte, “I want to draw a light bulb above my head, because I love to think and question things. I love science, I also love art and thunderstorms.”

It’s important when doing this kind of exercise to analyse why we represent ourselves the way we do. Charlotte encouraged these ideas and spoke to Bethany about why she enjoyed these things.

Lisa spoke to a boy called Travis (13). She helped him to identify his own emotions related to the answers he gave on his personality portrait questionnaire. This helped him to generate fresh ideas and use them for artistic inspiration.

The children were also encouraged to produce a piece of creative writing to accompany their portraits during the exhibition. It’s while doing this that they can truly unravel and explore the emotions that form their individual core identities – the human beings behind the masks.

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Lisa Reeve is one of ASLI’s first artists in residence. ASLI’s Bursledon House collaboration was her first art residency project and she handled it admirably. This is what Lisa had to say on her experience:

“I am so proud to be working with ASLI. Not only is it a wonderful way to support and inspire a diverse variety of people and children to be creative, art can also help with emotional healing. I myself struggle with social anxiety, among many mental health problems, and using art as a form of self-expression is very therapeutic for me. Art can allow oneself to express turbulent inner emotions that can often be hard, or impossible, to explain in humble words. The children at Bursledon House are such strong, brave, amazing individuals and we are so lucky to have the chance to work with them on creating their own personality portraits. The staff and pupils have welcomed us with open arms and it is inspiring to see how a hospital school operates. The staff at Bursledon House are particularly lovely, caring and open-minded. Helping others is always good therapy for the soul: ‘If you light a lamp for somebody it will also brighten your path.’ (Buddhist quote!) Thank you to ASLI for giving me the opportunity to give opportunities to others.”