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A mental health problem can become linked to identity

Suicide Creative Arts by Steven Stack

Male artists are more than twice as likely to commit suicide, and with female artists, the risk quadruples. This is different than the average population where women are more likely to attempt but males have a higher success rate, linked to the fact that men are more likely to use more violent methods like firearms.

In the mental health world a successful attempt results in death and a failed attempt results in life. Ludwig, Stress from limited financial circumstances and that of the rejection of personal products, or in the case of performers at an audition, the rejection of their very selves, may contribute to the higher risk of suicide for creative professionals. In , a year prospective was released by a group of Swedish psychological researchers, Mental illness, suicide and creativity.

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Their study found that the romantic correlation was not true. Creative professionals were not more likely to have a diagnosable mental illness. The exception was for bipolar disorder but even then the number was relatively small.

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  6. For a fascinating read on this matter, check out Touched with Fire: Manic-Depressive Illness and the Artistic Temperament by Kay Redfield Jamison What they did find was that the siblings of patients with autism and the first-degree relatives of patients with schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, and anorexia were significantly overrepresented in creative professions. So is there a genetic link to mental illness that is conducive to creativity and does that link make artistic people more susceptible to suicide?

    Another recent study found that those scoring high in schizotypy showed similar patterns of brain activity during creative thinking to those of the highly creative participants. Schizotypy is when a person shows traits of schizophrenia-like metaphorical or overelaborate thinking, eccentric behavior or appearance, and magical thinking or bizarre fantasies which are all nurtured in artistic communities. Writing in Flow author Susan K.

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    At our annual member retreat in April, we heard a common theme of taking care of the people who work in our theatres. Previously the focus has been the theatre operation itself.

    Suicide Squad Artists // Vlog 010

    There is an awareness that times are particularly troubling and if we want to produce quality theatre we have to provide our staff and artists a safe and healthy work environment. I think kindness is a good place to start. I think that heading to our theatres or our offices each day and assuming that everyone is doing the best that they can is powerful. It is not easy, but try it for a day and see how much more empathetic and understanding you are. We must be gentle with each other and supportive. When you ask someone how they are, mean it. Show them care.

    In this uncertain time where every day it seems that LGBT-identifying folks, immigrants, women, and people of color are faced with more hate from their neighbors, leaders, and lawmakers, let us try to be aware of the struggle.

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    We need to show up for each other, now more than ever. And I fervently believe that making a connection with people needs to be unsolicited. In the cases discussed in this article, both Jessica and Baden see below approached me and we decided to collaborate after initial discussions. Within my studio and art practice, heavy emphasis is placed on experimentation through play. When I enter my studio I revert to being a big kid, allowing myself to play with different media, materials, forms, designs and alternative methods of representation.

    Suicide Creative Arts by Steven Stack - AbeBooks

    Each work is infused with a complexity and blending together of symbols, metaphors or analogies. This requires vigorous engagement with the imagination and a belief in occurrences of a serendipitous nature. My intuitive response to information and the process of continual reflection helps me create sculptures and installations that I hope and believe will engage the audience in such a way as to facilitate a tacit dialogue between themselves and the artworks.

    The reaction to my artworks from writer Michelle Venus, who is the face behind the, And Tomorrow Comes Again project examining grief and healing after suicide loss , speaks of that tacit dialogue I so desperately search for in my art practice. I should be able to do that easily. But I need to spend more time understanding exactly how it has touched me. I love it. As an artist, I see myself as a storyteller — interpreting, reinterpreting and eventually retelling stories that are heartfelt and emotive and provide new insight into the issue of suicide.

    One of the installations from the Inspired Lives: Discovering Life in Imagination exhibition at the Dax Centre was created in collaboration with academic and writer, Baden Offord.

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    Baden contacted me after viewing my Meaning Making exhibition in Over coffee one Sunday morning he revealed the horrendous prevalence of suicide within the generations of his own family. Numerous coffees have been consumed since and as our friendship has grown so too have the insights into the complexities of suicide. In creating the installation, End of statistics see the main image above our aim has been to capture the complex nature of suicide that can sometimes appear to run in families.

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    Through our conversations, he and I journeyed backwards and forwards into the past through memories, photos and journal entries. What emerged I leave for Baden to express:. Although I was already sensitive to the transformative nature of suicide in my life, psychologically and emotionally, your work as a translator of feeling, bafflement and loss has inspired me immensely in the way I now approach the story of suicide through my life.

    You have brought coherence happiness as defined by Toni Morrison to this taboo subject.

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    Mic Eales is one of the participants in the multidisciplinary discussion at The Dax Centre on Talking about suicide: history, art and the media , on Thursday November 15, from 6pm. Screen music and the question of originality - Miguel Mera — London, Islington.