Health centres in Coventry highlight link between art and wellbeing

Monday 12th of October 2020 09:16 AM

Caption: AEP Press (left to right): Nicole Malatesta (Coventry City of Culture Trust), Lauren Mclardy (artist), Vicki Ridgway (Arden Estate Partnerships)

The link between art and wellbeing has been recognised in a series of new commissions at health centres across Coventry to mark World Mental Health Day (Saturday, October 10).

Arden Estates Partnerships, which manages four health centre buildings across the city, commissioned four artists and art groups to brighten up the centres on behalf of the patients and the staff.

Arden Estates Partnerships, which is a Coventry 2021 Club Member, unveiled the work on World Mental Health Day at the Keresley Green Medical Centre; the Longford Primary Care Centre; City of Coventry Health Centre; and Clay Lane Health Centre.

The work has been developed using the Moving Blue paint which has been created in the build-up to the city’s year as UK City of Culture in 2021.

Artist Andy Farr created the piece at the Keresley Green Medical Centre after making contact with local people to find out about their memories of the area and themes including the old colliery and links to The Specials have been built into his work.

Arty Folks also did its research into what makes Longford unique and created four panels reflecting the area to brighten up the entrance of the Longford Primary Care Centre.

Michael Batchelor opted for a large-scale piece of artwork to express the history of transport and movement in the city – from running and riding horses through to the invention of the jet engine – for his piece at the City of Coventry Health Centre.

The final piece at the Clay Lane Health Centre has been created by Lauren Mclardy and takes inspiration from local people. It is made up of hand-drawn illustrations using different shades of blue to represent Moving Blue as well as a hint of orange for contrast.

Chenine Bhathena, Creative Director at Coventry City of Culture Trust, said: “We are delighted to have built connections between Arden Estate Partnerships and local artists in the run-up to 2021, and to facilitate this important creative collaboration between art, health and wellbeing.

“These four new artworks commissioned from local artists and using our Moving Blue paint, have transformed these health centres and hopefully will make them more vibrant and welcoming places for patients and their families to visit.

“Art is a great way to bring attention to mental health and wellbeing. On World Mental Health Day, it is great to see the reveal of these four new artworks, which give us more reasons to have important conversations that raise awareness about the state of our mental health.”

George Marsh Chair of Arden Estates Partnerships, said: “Our Board are proud supporters of the City of Culture 2021 initiatives, and we hope these pieces of art go someway to enabling members of the community visiting our properties, to engage and be part of cultural celebrations.”

Lauren McLardy, the artist working at Clay Lane Health Centre, said: “It’s been great to work on this project, understanding the community and embedding some culture and promoting wellbeing at Clay Lane Health Centre. I hope the artwork brings some joy and starts a conversation within the community.”

Caption: AEP Press (left to right): Nicole Malatesta (Coventry City of Culture Trust), Lauren Mclardy (artist), Vicki Ridgway (Arden Estate Partnerships)