28th February – 24th June 2022
Open 8am – 4pm, Mon – Fri
Re:Surface showcases ceramic and print works produced by participants of an Arts in Health project at the Ceramics Studio at the Bethlem Royal Hospital. With a specific focus on surface design and the transferability of printmaking to ceramics, participants were invited to use imagery from their mental health recovery journeys to adorn and personalise a unique set of functional ceramic objects, showcasing their abilities and talent.
The project was led and curated by artists Evelyn Pelayo-Portela and Terence Wilde who work within the Main Occupational Therapy Department at Bethlem Royal Hospital.
For many people who have been on an inpatient mental health ward, being discharged back to the community can be an incredibly challenging time. Withdrawal from treatments or services can evoke strong emotions and impact on a person’s functioning and self-esteem, particularly as for many, having to spend time in hospital may have meant a loss of paid occupation, a reduction in social networks or the abandonment of leisure pursuits. These circumstances can often lead to uncertainty about the future and what to do next.
Re:Surface highlights a sense of shared enthusiasm and a capacity for people to work well together on a shared project through a particularly challenging time: the Covid-19 pandemic. By providing a safe and inspiring workspace, participants were supported to build their confidence and mastery of skills within ceramics and printmaking.
This exhibition celebrates the creative output and skills developed by participants through three blocks of Re:Surface workshops that took place from January until December 2021. Participants developed two themes: The Natural World and Everyday Objects to motivate, inspire, and pique curiosity while still leaving plenty of room for personal expression and interest.
“For me, the success of the project lies in the ability of vulnerable people to share their stories so openly and take risks creatively.”
Terence Wilde – Project Organiser and Curator
“Re:Surface has been an excellent way to connect creatively with service users living in the community. There is a real need for projects of this nature, where we can support people to recover from a difficult time via getting in touch with their artistic selves and establishing positive relationships with others who have had a similar experience. The fact that many of our participants reported that the only thing they would change is for the project to be longer is testament to this.”
Evelyn Pelayo-Portela – Project Organiser and Curator
Nearest rail station: Denmark Hill
Bus: 40, 42, 68, 176, 185, 468, 484 all stop nearby
The Ceramic Studio is part of Main Occupational Therapy Department at Bethlem Royal Hospital.
Thank you to the Maudsley Charity
Header image: Terence Wilde mono printing
Images: Mushroom Plate by Anya Ellis and Inanimate Object by Emma Hunter