Mental Health and Justice

Image credit: workshop led by OOMK collective at Bethlem Gallery, photographer: Manuela Barczewski


Welcome to Bethlem Gallery’s Mental Health and Justice project, a collaborative, innovative endeavour that places artists and their practice at the heart of current research. 

Bethlem Gallery aims to challenge the often exclusive or hierarchical conversations that have characterised the areas of mental health, law and fine art. We have over 20 years of experience bringing diverse audiences together through art and facilitating platforms that invert power hierarchies. This invited artist programme commissions and supports artists to devise and lead on a series of collaborative and participatory arts interventions.

The research:

The research, based at the Institute of Psychiatry Psychology and Neuroscience, Kings College London, looks at public policy challenges that emerge where mental health and mental healthcare interact with principles of human rights.

The collaboration involves clinical experts, lawyers, philosophers, neuroscientists, social scientists and service-users in a research network that delivers practical guidelines, enhances policy engagement, and advances interdisciplinary work and innovation in service-user involvement in research and public engagement.

The artists:

The role of the artist and their practice is two-fold; 

to communicate nuance context within and without the research.

to provide an accessible platform for underrepresented voices to feed into and respond to complex research.

The artist led programme interweaves with the work of the researchers and continues to deepen and widen over the four year relationship between art and research.

The emphasis is on process, both artistic practice and the reciprocal relationship between artist, researcher and public. 


The team:

Lucy Owen, producer

Sam Curtis, curator

Michela Ross, evaluator

Shetha Haddad, administrator