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New Exhibit at UC Blue Ash Art Gallery Features Art and Mental Health Theme


The University of Cincinnati Blue Ash College Art Gallery is hosting a new exhibition that features the works of area artists who have encountered personal challenges with mental health issues.

The exhibition, titled Inside/Out: Art and Mental Health, consists of artwork created by Adult Services clients of Central Clinic Behavioral Health at the UC College of Medicine campus in Avondale, and members of the Recovery Center of Hamilton County in Mount Auburn. The diverse collection of work includes assemblage, collage, digital art, drawing, mixed media, painting, and sculpture. The exhibition was curated by UC Blue Ash College faculty members, H. Michael Sanders and John Wolfer, with assistance from colleagues Matt Bennett and Nicole Trimble.

Jerry Saylor – Toulouse at Royale, oil on canvas, 36” x 24” (n.d.)

Jerry Saylor – Toulouse at Royale, oil on canvas, 36” x 24” (n.d.)

Comprising over 50 individual artworks by 38 artists, the show displays well-developed artistic talents wielded by artists confronting mental health challenges, as well as the use of creative approaches to personal expression by individuals going through therapy at one of the participating mental health organizations.

This creative collaboration between UC Blue Ash College Art Gallery, Central Clinic and the Recovery Center, was inspired by Central Clinic’s 95th anniversary celebration during 2018. There is also an interesting connection between the organizations, since former UC President Raymond Walters, the prior namesake of UC Blue Ash College, initiated Central Clinic’s location on the UC College of Medicine campus back in 1932.

Nelly Rimini, adult services director at Central Clinic, was instrumental in initiating this collaboration and facilitating the submission of artwork by clients at Central Clinic. She noted, “The exhibition is an outstanding opportunity for people served by Central Clinic and the Recovery Center to showcase their talents and share with the community their recovery journey. The artwork and poetry reflect their struggles and triumphs in coping with mental health issues while illuminating their personal strength and humanity.” Central Clinic Adult Services provides clinical counseling, assessment, psychiatric medication services, psychological testing and case management to assist individuals experiencing life crisis and/or serious mental illness.

The Recovery Center of Hamilton is a peer run organization that supports county residents working on recovery from mental health disorders. Executive Director Chris Pedoto and Program Manager Bill Brown, were also effective advocates for the exhibition through their facilitation of artwork from members of the Recovery Center.

Exhibiting artists include: Anonymous, Theresa Bryant, Nicole Carter, Michael Coppage, Alyson L. Dempsey, Sharon Frey, Hammond, Jonathan Hancock, Denise Hanley, Chloe Iliff, Patrick Martin, Holly Ann Meiser, Stephan Moore, Amy Mrusek, Jeannie Mueller, Recardo G. Parker Jr., Michael Reynolds, Krysia Rush, Jerry Saylor, Rhonda L. Thorne, Sarah Gallant, Dr. Sara Grace, Margaret Hall, Angel Harden, Anthony Kohlmayer, Becky Mosteller, Kimberly Phirman, Pam West, Allison Williams, Crystal Wright, and Group Project: (Angel/Becky/ Brenda/ Carolyn/Debra/Kasia/Linda/Pamela/Rhonda).

A selection of original poetry related to the exhibition is available on the UC Blue Ash Art Gallery webpage for the show (as noted below), and includes work by Linda Baden, Justin Chu, Alyson L. Dempsey, Shelly Kinder, Holly Ann Meiser, Sacoiya Pruitt and Allison Williams.

Inside/Out: Art and Mental Health, which is free and open to the public, will be on display through Friday, November 30, 2018 at the UC Blue Ash Art Gallery, located in the Annex Building at 4131 Cooper Road in Blue Ash (at the corner of Cooper and Plainfield roads). Art Gallery hours during the exhibition are 10:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m. Monday-Friday and 10:00 a.m.– 2:00 p.m.on Saturday. A closing reception, open to the public with free refreshments, will be held on Thursday, November 29 from 5:00 – 8:00 PM.

More information about the exhibition, including the catalogue in PDF format and poetry written by some of the contributing artists, is available on the UC Blue Ash College Art Gallery webpage.

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