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Mick Turner, Alison Adams (Alzheimer's Society), Conor Lawell (Dementia NI), Mayor of Mid and East Antrim, Ald Gerardine Mulvenna, Maureen Patterson (seated), Tommy Foster, Mrs McIlroy (representing artist William McIlroy) and Albert McNinch.

Inspirational exhibition showcases artwork created by individuals living with Dementia

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A creative display of artwork designed by individuals living with Dementia from across Northern Ireland, is being showcased at an exhibition in Ballymena until Saturday 20th January 2024.

 

The inspiring free exhibition entitled, ‘Do you see me?’, celebrates the talents of local people who are living with a Dementia diagnosis and who have expressed their creativity through various art forms, ranging from paintings and photographs to millinery and tapestry.

 

The creative initiative was developed by Mid and East Antrim Borough Council in partnership with Alzheimer’s Society NI, Dementia NI and Mid and East Antrim’s Dementia Friendly Steering Group, as part of an ongoing commitment to creating a Dementia Friendly Borough as listed within Mid and East Antrim’s Community Plan – ‘Putting People First’.

 

Mayor of Mid and East Antrim, and Council’s Dementia Champion, Ald Gerardine Mulvenna, said: “I am absolutely delighted to launch this inspirational exhibition which highlights the incredible power of art as a form of communication. The display is testament to our talented artists who so beautifully captured and reflected their vision, memories or experiences through their various art forms. I commend all those involved in this initiative and encourage members of the public to join in celebrating our local artists by visiting the exhibition.”

 

Alison Adams, Dementia Advisor for Alzheimer’s Society NI added, “The Alzheimer’s Society are delighted to work alongside Mid & East Antrim Council showcasing the artwork of people living with Dementia. The talent shown in this exhibition proves that not only can you continue to produce masterpieces you can also learn new skills after a diagnosis and use art as therapy.”

 

Conor Lawell, Empowerment Lead for the North and East at Dementia NI, said: “Misconceptions about dementia are widespread, meaning many people put off getting a diagnosis because they are worried about the stigma. To break through this stigma, we are sharing art works by our members, all of whom live with the condition, and championing our message of hope – that with the right support, it is possible to live well with dementia.”

 

“There are over 20,000 people living with dementia across Northern Ireland and this number is projected to rise to 60,000 by 2050, due in part to our ageing population. Years of stigma and misunderstanding have led to common misconceptions about what it means to live with dementia and what we can do to help improve the quality of life of those with the condition. “

 

“Dementia NI’s exhibition sets out to challenge these misconceptions, transforming how people view the condition and starting conversations through the medium of art. It shares a message of hope that many people with dementia are still able to enjoy life in the same way as before their diagnosis and live well with dementia.”

The exhibition created by individuals living with Dementia from Mid and East Antrim and beyond, is open to the public until Saturday 20th January 2024 and can be viewed at the Braid, Bridge Street, Ballymena from 10am – 4pm each day.

Please visit www.midandeastantrim.gov.uk/dementia for more information.

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