Art in whatever context, form or medium can be an indispensable tool to cope with our feelings, dreams and perceptions, helping us to channel positive or negative emotions into the anonymous open.
Man is a visual animal! Long before sound, smell, feel or taste reach our brain, the visual impulse is absorbed and processed! More than any other sensation a picture can imprint itself onto our mind as an undeletable memory of joy or sadness, delight or horror.
This is why images have been one of the oldest, most powerful forms of communication, reaching us even today through sparse rock and cave drawings by early man to the onslaught by modern media in a globally visualised world.
Long before psychiatry in modern medicine rediscovered art and music as a way of dealing and possibly treating traumata and transient and permanent mental disorders, men has been aware of the inspiring, soothing, healing and soul expanding power of art and sound from ancient religious ceremonies to the integration of art and music into our primary school curricula.
Cameroonian artist Adjani Okpu-Egbe, who has fought the severe emotional effects of physical uprooting, displacement, rejection and isolation, has found art and writing as the outlet for his frustrations and unbroken energy saving him from self-destruction. He feels that recent events ‘could be a tragic, ironic cry for help. An aggressive call for many more scouts to be ejaculated into our street to scavenge for talents, a call for mentors, a cry for the provision of many more easily accessible and affordable means of expression and education! As a self-taught expressionist artist, what I want to say is that there is HOPE in my department.’
The Koestler Trust, the UK’s best-known prison arts charity, has always worked on the principle that – ‘to make our society safer, it pays to channel offenders’ energies to positive ends, to build their self-worth and help them learn new skills. The arts are an especially effective way of engaging with offenders who feel alienated from mainstream education and employment, and there is growing evidence that the arts can help in changing offenders’ lives.'
This event will be held @ Hospital Club, Friday 23 September, from 7.30pm onwards. Don't forget to RSVP here.
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