Dolly's work as part of the Art & Justice exhibition, 2021

Dolly Sen

Mental Health & Justice Project Artist

Dolly Sen (b. 1970, London, UK) Their arts practice crosses writing, performance, film and visual art.  Since 2004 she has exhibited and performed internationally. Their films have also been shown worldwide. Their journey as an artist has taken them up a tree in Regents Park, to California’s Death Row, to the Barbican, Tower Bridge and the Royal Academy, Trafalgar Square, and up a ladder to screw a lightbulb into the sky. 

Their work is seen as subversive, humorous and radical. They are interested in debate and social experiment around themes of madness, sanity, the other, and acceptable behaviours, from an unusual and unconventional position of power. They are interested in society’s perception of mental health and madness – whether people think ‘it’s all in the head’ and not a response to social and political issues. Madness is partly political. Maybe we don’t have mental health difficulties, maybe we are living in a harsh, unjust, corrupt world that causes people to struggle. The world is sanitised, not sane.  There is a side to madness that doesn’t get shown, that is intelligent, funny, and pointing of the emperor’s new clothes. Much of this is done through my art. It is time to share that discussion with the rest of the world, and art is a very powerful way to do that.

Basically, Dolly’s creativity aims to put normality over their lap and slap its naughty arse. 

More recently, she has sectioned the DWP and is working on an Unlimited/Wellcome Collection commission where they are standing up for the survivor’s voice in mental health archives. 

She/They. She currently resides in Norwich in Norfolk. 

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