All Our Brains

Part of the Catalyst:Festival of Creativity 2016

This year The Valerie Foundation and Heeley City Farm won the opportunity to be part of Sheffield Hallam University's Catalyst: Festival of Creativity. This meant that an idea that we had been talking about for more years could come to life. We started with a symposium on 21st May 2016, this symposium was open to anyone who wanted to join in with the premise that anyone who wanted to come would hopefully learn about dementia and hopefully have some ideas for works of art that they may want to make. Roughly 70 people, carers, ex-carers, artists, non-artists, medical professionals and people just wanting to find out more about dementia came to the event to listen to speakers who are in the dementia world. As part of the event we had workshops/inspiration rooms, where people could go in and look at pieces of dementia related art by others, art in general, read books/leaflet/info material and talk to people and network with others who may want to make work.

Following the symposium we held 4 bi-monthly workshops for people wanting to make work to get together and talk through ideas, listen to others, visit and spend time in the exhibition pace.

On 18th November 2016 the exhibition launched in the Foyer of Sheffield Hallam University's Cantor Building. It last for 6 weeks and was greatly received. Over 200 people visited the exhibition on the opening night and say work from 19 exhibitors showcasing 22 pieces of work. This exhibition brought together many different organisations, engaged over 1000 people and turned what is a usual an empty walk-through into an engaging space where ideas and dialog could flourish.

Speakers of the Symposium

Rachel Allen (Alzheimer's Research Uk), Barbara Lewis (Limon Attire Ltd), Siana Glen (Occupational Therapy student), Emma Parr (Occupational Therapy student), Leon Lockley (Freelance Director of Photography/Cameraman/Editor & visiting lecturer at SHU), Andrew Pearse (The Valerie Foundation & Heeley City Farm), Lee Pearse (The Valerie Foundation & Heeley City Farm), Grace Stead (Enrichment For The Elderly & Sheffield Dementia Action Alliance), Sam Smith (Oral Historian)


Roger Baker (photography), Julie Blacker (sculpture & pencil drawing), Siana Glen (installation), Ryan Green (sound design), Diane Hanchliffe (poetry by people with dementia), Ibraheem Abdul Kareem (photography), Barbara Lewis (textiles), Leon Lockley (film), Chris Lowe (film), Richard Melland (photography), J S May (spoken word), Andrew Pearse (painting & digital manipulation/design), Lee Pearse (film & digital manipulation/design), Saskia Peet (sculpture), Jake Richardson (film), Grace Stead (film), Judy Stevenson (digital design), Esme Turner (drawing), Lucas Turner (drawing), Andy Vine (sculpture), Neil Webb (sound design)

Special thanks to...

Christopher Amner, Rachel Doole, Carol Hunt, Daniel Judge, Tim Machin, Jessica Povey, Josh Povey, Neil Webb, Ron Wright, Technicians Team, Catering Team, Security Team and the Team down at The Printshop for helping the us make the exhibition happen.