MAKING MIND WANDERING VISIBLE:
This was a participatory exhibition (October 2018-March 2019) of drawings about the restless mind. The exhibition was held at the Social, Genetic and Developmental Psychiatry Centre, King's College London, where Kai was/is the first artist-in-residence. The aim of the exhibition was to extend how we picture, imagine and think about different minds and how we are, and complicate discourses around neurodiversity, mental health and disability which remain highly sitgmatised and impoverished. The exhibition started with 90 drawings created by participants (aged 7-85) to #MagicCarpet events between October 2017 and September 2018. They include those held at the Innovation Showcase at Nesta’s People Powered Health (500 health policy workers), 5thEuropean Network for Hyperkinetic Disorders Conference in Edinburgh (for 500 brain and mind researchers and mental health professionals), UK Adult ADHD Network International Congress 2017 (for 300 ADHD professionals and researchers), Headway East London (charity for people with brain injury), as well as the Medical Research Centre Preview Festival and Kai’s Open Studio, both held at SGDP. During the course of the 5-month exhibition, 44 new A5 drawings were created by visitors, making the total 134. Participants earned colourful badges designed by Kai, so that they become ‘badge-wearing mind wanderers’.
During the private view on 3rd October 2018, a discussion entitled ‘The Creative Researcher?’was held. This explored creative strategies amid an unstable academic and economic climate today. The expert panel for the evening consisted of #MagicCarpet mentor and Professor of Psychiatry Philip Asherson, Alessandra Cianetti (Curator and Creative Producer and #MagicCarpet arts production manager), Dr Kathy Barrett (University Lead for Research Staff Development, Centre for Research Staff Development) and geneticist Dr Radhika Kandaswamy. The evening was opened by Professor Cathryn Lewis, Director of the SGDP.
Photos of the evening by Gaynor Tutani. Read article by Kai on thought-leadership of arts in effecting culture changein the BMJ medical humanities blog. Read article by Kaj on the importance of the visibility of women in discourses around neurodiversity.
'Thank you so much for inviting me yesterday’s workshop - it was really interesting to hear you and the others talk about their career path, identify and changes in perspective on life and work. I really enjoyed the evening' -- Prof. Cathryn Lewis, Deputy Director of SGDP
'I really enjoyed it and it was a great pleasure to participate!! I really enjoy your art and combining art and science!!! 😃' -- 2nd year PhD student in ADHD, Vainieri, Isabella
'I'm keen to do interdisciplinary collaborations and how to plan my career; the evening has helped me with thinking about how to bring order to the chaos of my ideas.' -- Medical student
'Thanks for the opportunity to share my experience [...] Loved the different perspectives people have about science and art, together and separately!! Great job in organising it!' -- expert panel memebr Dr Radhika Kandaswamy:
'Thanks so much for this evening, I think it's a really needed conversation that needs to happen more often for both art and academia.Let's keep talking and working together to make better, bigger collaborations!' -- expert panel member Alessandra Cianetti