Brain Candy Reading, October 15, 2018:


November 14, 7pm: When Art Makes You Lose Your Mind

Artists have always been inspired by their deepest fears, personal traumas and core concerns. Mining them helps us connect with universal themes and experiences. Nowadays, there seems to be an added source inspiration: political witness. In these tumultuous times, artists are not only responding to internal demons, but external, socio-political ones as well. All of these muses are fraught with inherent mental stress. When you are motivated to dig deeper than ever before to deliver urgent art—even at the expense of your mental health—who will witness the witness?

This workshop is for those for whom art is a way to process profound emotional/social/political pain, grief, fear and/or anger. While art often touches these emotions, there are times when an artist feels compelled to express them before the emotions have been harnessed, processed or even survived. There are times when the artist is creating art about a shipwreck while the ship is sinking. At other times, a seemingly dispassionate work may strike an unexpected vein of emotion that is difficult to manage while continuing to create.

Artists in all genres who are having difficulty balancing their art with their mental health will benefit from this exploration. Panelists will address the pitfalls of creativity and mental health, while artists will share their stories of managing emotionally difficult projects.

Join us in a roundtable to discuss surviving the deep cut of artmaking, and how to preserve sanity when doing your hardest work.

Panelists: Desiree Cooper (fiction/memoir), Sherina Rodriquez (playwright), Oren Goldenberg (filmmaker), Gail Parker (therapist)