In Focus: The Fascination with Outsider Art

Here is the third installment of the 'In Focus' series, which sees regular question and answer sessions between me and PhD student Marion Scherr. This post looks at the increasing fascination with outsider art, and the lack of the artist's voice in exhibitions and publications. Marion Scherr (MS): Although ‘Outsider Art’ is still a niche … Continue reading In Focus: The Fascination with Outsider Art

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In Focus: Exhibiting Outsider Art

Welcome to the second installment of 'In Focus,' a series of blog posts that see a question and answer session taking place between me and PhD student Marion Scherr. This post focuses on the implications of the term 'outsider art' for the artists it describes, and considerations when exhibiting works of outsider art.  Marion Scherr … Continue reading In Focus: Exhibiting Outsider Art

The ‘S’ Word: can the arts reduce mental health stigma?

In the UK – despite much progress since the abolition of large psychiatric hospitals and a significant increase in care in the community – stigma surrounding mental health issues is still an incredibly prominent issue. The Mental Health Foundation notes that “people with mental health problems say that the social stigma attached to mental ill … Continue reading The ‘S’ Word: can the arts reduce mental health stigma?

Life vs Work: The Dangers of a Biographical Interpretative Approach

“The centrality of biography to Outsider Art is not only an integral component of its categorization and valuation, but something which, through autofictional praxis, can be deliberately co-opted as a savvy marketing device, or made to function as a potent mechanism for a critique of the category itself and the foundations on which this particular … Continue reading Life vs Work: The Dangers of a Biographical Interpretative Approach