Art + Mental Health





People keep on asking me: when am I going to list all the art and artists that have helped keep me sane? In light of the new Level 5 restrictions and the renewed concern for people's mental health, I cast my mind over the past when art has proved to be a positive intervention. True, it's no 'bleach on the lung' but it provides some help.

So here's a list:

Some of the art and artists that have helped preserve some mental health.


1. How I Got Over - Mahalia Jackson. The back and white grainy version on Youtube.


2. Samuel Beckett- From an Abandoned Work. Sitting in the Galway Library, opened a book at random and started reading. Lifted me right out of the dark.


3. Isaac Bashevis Singer - The Slave. I read this and I stopped gambling for 6 months. The book has nothing to do with gambling.


4. John Clare - I Am


5. Donal Dineen - No Disco. During the self-isolating teenage years.


6. Lola Gonzalez – Able and Elio. Temple Bar Gallery.2018.


7. Richard Maxwell and New York City Players.


8. Francis Alys. IMMA. 2010.


9. Rachel Cusk, Maggie Nelson, Deborah Levy, Penelope Fitzgerald.


10. Lars Laumann at Galway Arts Centre. 2009.


11. Catcher in the Rye, Catch 22, Catch by The Cure, ‘a catch in the breath…’


12. Geoff Dyer, Ben Lerner, Ismail Kadare.


13. Paul Celan - Assisi


14. Rosanna Cade. Walking: Holding. 2013.


15. Paul Muldoon.


16. Dublin Contemporary 2011, - Doug Fishbone- Elmina, Jonathan Grossmalerman etc


17. Anne Briggs


18. Anocha Suwichakornpon – By the Time it Gets Dark. 2016.


19. Artur Zmijewski, Blindly. 2010.


20. Ozu, Hou-Hsiao-Hsien, Hong Sang soo.