Does your mind wander? How far is too far? What do you picture when you daydream? Where do you go? How often is too often? When does mental restlessness become impairment? What are the boundaries between order and disorder, in the psychiatric, artistic, social and metaphorical senses of the terms? How do the wanderings of the mind and body correlate? In what ways can a science-art collaborative exploration of mind wandering contribute to, challenge and extend our understanding of wellbeing?
We sat on a mat and had a chat and made maps! #MagicCarpet is a collaboration between King's College London Artist-in-Residence Dr Kai Syng Tan and Professor of Molecular Psychiatry Philip Asherson of MRC Social, Genetic & Developmental Psychiatry. It draws on emerging research on the universality of mind wandering as well as how it relates to visual art and Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD). Channeling the exuberance of Grayson Perry’s tapestry art, the work embeds within it Kai’s lived experience as a mind wandering extraordinaire. Through a programme of talks, workshops and the creation of a new participatory tapestry art installation, #MagicCarpet aims to generate a creative space to explore the lines – linear, squiggly, fractured, actual, imagined, messy, fascinating – between ‘normal’ and ‘abnormal’ behaviours, imagination and pathology, art practice and scientific research as well as the physical weave and digital pixel. The ‘magic’ that #MagicCarpet aims for is not to provide answers but for us to raise questions, learn from and challenge one another and irritate existing assumptions about how we relate to the world, self and one another.
Come ride with us on the #MagicCarpet. Join us in forthcoming events. Come fly with us virtually, too, by sending your thoughts, comments, suggestions, images, audio-visual clips, texts and definitions to our Twitter @wesatonamat or email firstname.lastname@example.org. Let's open our minds. Let’s see how far we can go, together.
Visit or Mail us: email@example.com
Tweet us: @wesatonamat
Tag us: #MagicCarpet
Visit or send us: Dr Kai Syng Tan
MRC Social, Genetic and Developmental Psychiatry Centre, PO Box 80, Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology & Neuroscience, King's College London, 16 De Crespigny Park, London SE5 8AF UK
Background image by Erkembode 2017