Tuesday, 10 January 2012

Alastair Campbell on Happiness, David Edgar on the value of the Arts, Field Music, Culture Shots and more...

A constant stream of comments, thoughts and ideas have been coming in around part one of m a n i f e s t o, some of which are here for your delectation. All will be revealed over the next few weeks. Thank you EVERYONE. Please feel free to email any comments which must be received before 31st January.
BlueSCI and Field Music
Our friends and colleagues at BlueSCI were featured in the Guardian this week and to hear their collaborative work with Field Music and see the work of Arts for Health alumni Caro Inglis, you have until the 17th January to get to The Lauriston Gallery in Sale. 

‘...happiness is all the more intense for knowing what it’s like to be utterly miserable.’ Alastair Campbell
A really interesting take on the ‘happiness’ debate that continues to fill the columns and obsess politicians, out for a quick hit. Alastair Campbell has written a book about his experience of clinical depression and the affect of his best friends death on his own understanding of what aspiration to happiness might be about. The book’s out on 12th Jan, but a good extract from it shows some considered thinking; that its not all about simpering positivism, but the grief, anger and depression that life throws at us, tempered by friendship and love (and some of those five ways+) that might add up to a life well lived and reflected on as we face our death. Click on the photo below for the extract.

Why should we fund the arts?
Publicly funded arts institutions are under more pressure than ever to quantify the social benefits they bring, as would be done for schools and hospitals. But isn't the crucial role of art to challenge the way society is run? An excellent article by playwright David Edgar. Click on the photograph below. 

Dementia and Imagination with Claire Ford
I’m thrilled that the artist Claire Ford will be sharing reflections of her Churchill Fellowship at our first network event of 2012 on Thursday January 26th between 6:00 and 8:00pm (venue to be confirmed at MMU). As usual the event is free to our members, and will be informal. Claire spent 10 weeks in the USA exploring different approaches to dementia and the arts, and will be sharing this experience, her findings and ideas about future developments in the field. Thanks to those who’ve said they want to attend. Anyone who hasn’t yet expressed an interest, please get in touch by the 19th January. Venue will be confirmed by email one week prior to the event.

+Culture Shots 
Museums and Galleries Week
Culture makes a difference. Experience it.
7 days
5 hospitals
70 creative workshops
6-12 February 2012

+Culture Shots is a week-long series of creative events run by museums and galleries in all five Central Manchester University Hospitals this February. From museum collections, music, film and photography to Wild food foraging, painting and the science of football, these unique sessions give you the chance to discover how culture can enhance your own life, your professional practice, and your patients’ health and wellbeing. www.HealthandCulture.org.uk

...and finally, although I know its a little overdone, the recent edit of the Great Dictator speech has been doing the rounds and is worth a few moments. Thanks, C.P


  1. Good to see the progress on manifesto Clive and the notes I made from the edifying initial discussions in MAnchester. Have sent comments. Thought this video could be an interesting angle for the growing movement...

  2. I want to thank you for this post. This information was very helpful.Please keep up the good work and I look forward to more of your great posts!