The University of Southampton
Health Sciences

Living with Dementia: Ordinary Lives, Inspirational Voices

Published: 
21 July 2017
Biographical portrait close up
The exhibition showcases biographical portraits from artist Cathy Garner

A thought-provoking exhibition of portraits of people living with dementia and those who care for them begins this month.

The project, led by Dr Tula Brannelly from the Faculty of Health Sciences and supported by the Alzheimer's Society University of Southampton Doctoral Training Centre, presents the ordinary lives and inspirational voices of people with dementia, through the media of biographical portraits and film. Each portrait captures a range of emotions and experiences and is the result of conversations and interviews with participants in their own homes.

Tula reflects: "...while many policies, practitioners and researchers foreground dementia over everything else in a person’s life, to many it is likely to be background to daily experience, just another thing that needs some attention. People are interdependent, and we wanted to depict people in the context of their lives with others. As researchers working with people with dementia, we are aware that the common negative assumptions associated with dementia are only a small part of the story of living with dementia. We are grateful to the participants of this project who shared their ordinary lives and inspirational voices. "

Following the University’s Public Engagement in Research Unit call for funding, Dr Brannelly suggested the idea as a way to help people with dementia produce an account of their lives and to tell stories that help a wider audience grasp the impact of dementia on everyday life.

The exhibition takes place Monday 24th July - 29th August 2017 at Southampton Central Library, Civic Centre and following that, the 9th September until 14th October 2017 Turner Sims Gallery, University of Southampton Highfield campus.   

Visit the ‘Living with Dementia’ blog to learn more about the project and to find out about the artist Cathy Garner, who created the biographical portraits.

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