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Zoë Dilworth & Robyn Haslett

11 - 21 May. Invited Viewing: 18 May, 7:00 - 9:00 pm

Arts 4 All


Exhibition from artists Zoë Dilworth and Robyn Haslett that centres around mental health.

About the artists:
'My name is Zoë Dilworth. I am a photographer and fine artist in my final year studying photography at Ulster University. I am diagnosed with borderline personality disorder and atypical bulimia nervosa, including psychosis. My illnesses inspire my work as I use art as therapy. My paintings, drawings and photographs allow me to express myself and show others how I feel.

I experience hallucinations which are linked with my diagnosis of borderline personality disorder, otherwise known as emotionally unstable personality disorder. An illness that can be described as an instability in mood along with impulsivity and self-destructive behaviour. I am expressing how the hallucinations make me feel and showing the confusing and chaotic nature of my mind. The images show how I feel, letting out my emotions as a coping mechanism for the illness, making the invisible visible.'

Robyn Haslett:
'As a 26-year-old living on the outskirts of Belfast I have seen a lot of problems young people have to deal with every day whether they are my close friends or even myself. I have been inspired by my fiancé Ryan as he had troubles with mental health and has come very close to ending his life. He has a great life motto: 'Strength is what we gain from the madness we survive'. Personally he has shown me how you can change your life around and not let the darkness take over. There are always better days than others but it's all about taking the problem by the horns and dealing with it.

I wanted to dedicate my painting to express there are dark days, but the better days do come. My paintings express what it is like to live with a mask on every day. The Balaclava in my work symbolises so many things in Northern Ireland especially evil and paramilitaries. I used the mask to show case hiding emotions underneath the mask and how low you can feel. My paintings also show hiding the face, which represents hiding there feelings, expressions also making you feel like you are hiding under a mask.

Throughout my paintings I like to use expressive tones, expressing the spiralling thoughts and the blur of life. Gerhard Richter and Justin Mortimer are two main artists I use continually to express colour and use their expressive techniques. I love the dragging and roughness of Richter's paintings, this has been my aim to look free and less restricted.

My aim from this series of paintings is to raise awareness for anyone who is suffering from mental health issues to let them know it's ok not to be ok.'


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