Working community for artists with mental illness

The Awakenings Project is all about empowering and healing through art.

A newspaper clipping with the title "Mind over Matter" with two images of artist's work that are both colorful, abstract and with paint strokes full of  emotion and tension.
The Awakenings Project

What began as an art show in 1996 has become what is now a working studio space with a fine arts program geared for visual artists as well as those who express themselves in theater, writing, music and drama – artists who have psychiatric illnesses.

The space creates an environment of support, friendship and mentoring.  A sense of community provides a nurturing environment for the artist to evolve while facing the challenges of mental illness.

The project’s website puts it this way:

“Art, whether it be fine art or art therapy, heals some of the personal wounds brought about by mental ill health.  It is a purposeful and optimistic activity.  The artists plan exhibits, look forward to upcoming shows, grow and develop their artistic talents.  The artists receive positive feedback, field questions about their art, and also make sales or win commissions.  Writers, on the other hand, find vindication in seeing their work published in an attractive and reputable journal”.      ~The Healing Power of Creativity, The Awakenings Project

Their website shares works by the artists along with their biographies.  It also features upcoming events and submissions, an online gallery and a means to subscribe to The Awakenings Review which is an internationally acclaimed quarterly review.

A  The Chicago Tribune’s YouTube  provided an artist’s  inspiring perspective and insight as to what the community is like and thus contributed to another goal of the project which is increased public awareness.

I am a BFA Photography major at Seattle University. I champion for civil rights from the perspective of one with disabilities that give me the abilities to do so. I am a passionate, educated and informed advocate of the arts in all aspects.

2 responses to “Working community for artists with mental illness

  1. Thank you so much for featuring us on your website. I love the way you have presented it also. We try to combat stigma by being open about our identities and by focusing on our abilities instead of our disabilities. Thanks again.

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