Following her recent solo exhibition The Irregularity of Order I speak with artist and jewellery designer Amanda Burton who very generously shares her story of how following a breakdown during her time studying Biochemistry and starting to volunteer at creative mental health service Inkwell Arts lead to her developing her own artistic practice. She also explains how these significant experiences inform the work and approach she now takes both artistically and in her job as Development Worker for Inkwell – something she never thought she may have been able to do.
I feel we sometimes have to be careful in saying that artistic activity and mental health have an intrinsic link, but there is something to be said for their relationship to one another. This can be as a coping mechanism, a form of recovery, and sometimes as a causation (for either). However, there is possibly more to be said for a perception, which maybe appears on both sides, that more mainstream artistic activity and arts-based mental health support are different, or separate, from one another – hopefully this episode goes someway to challenging that assumption.