DATE:                    FRIDAY 23RD APRIL 2021

TIME:                     16.00 – 20.00 BST (UK Time) / 17.00 – 21.00 CEST (European Time)



This event is FREE to attend but you’ll need to book in advance.

The impact of the world around us can have a huge impact on our wellbeing and mental health. Over two evenings, SICK! in Manchester and Kunstinstituut Melly in Rotterdam will present six panel discussions examining the different ways we can be affected by our environment. The second day explores three themes:

Session 4: Staying In

Time: 16.00 – 17.00 BST / 17.00 – 18.00 CEST

Our first discussion will be looking at how we create our own living spaces, what they say about us and how they shape the thoughts we have about ourselves. What do our private spaces say about our self-esteem and our place in the world? Have our relationships with the places we call home changed because of COVID?

Tim Harrison, Creative Director, SICK! Festival
Jackie Hagan, Poet, Stand-Up Comic, Theatre-Maker and Playwright
Hamja Ahsan, Artist, Writer & Activist
Moosje M. Goosen, PhD Research Fellow, University of Amsterdam

Session 5: The Digital Effect

Time: 17.30 – 18.30 BST / 18.30 – 19.30 CEST

Nowadays we can be alone in our rooms whilst connecting to millions around the world. That’s a lot of scrutiny and peer-pressure to face alone. How does this affect our mental health and the way we see ourselves? The dynamics between isolation and connection have shifted so much and in our fifth session we look at its effects, both positive and negative, particularly on the lives of younger people.

Robin van den Akker, Senior Lecturer Continental Philosophy and Cultural Studies, Erasmus University College
Prof. Sandeep Ranote, Executive Medical Lead Mental Health, GM Health & Social Care Partnership
Joe Strickland, Artistic Director of Chronic Insanity, Theatre-Maker, Digital Producer, and Creative Technologist
Prof. Ian Tucker, Professor and Director of Impact and Innovation in the School of Psychology at UEL

Session 6: Care and Cultural Spaces

Time: 19.00 – 20.00 BST / 20.00 – 21.00 CEST

Cultural institutions like art galleries, museums and theatres have long recognised their value in contributing to society’s well-being. They now lead the way in making mental health and social responsibility visible within their buildings and as part of the art they present. But has that put the responsibility on cultural institutions to look after the nation’s mental health that should be the responsibility of government? Our final session looks at the shift in arts, culture and health at a time when core mental health services are being cut.

Sofia Hernandez Chong Cuy, Director, Kunstinstituut Melly
Alex Coulter, Director of the National Centre for Creative Health, Director of Arts & Health South West. Alex also provides the secretariat for the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Arts, Health and Wellbeing
Pelin Basaran, Producer and Curator of contemporary performance currently working at Contact, Manchester
Esther Vossen, Director and Curator of The Fifth Season


Jason Crouch – Digital Producer
Mel Rashbrooke – Stage Manager

Kunstinstituut Melly