Virtual gallery in Bradford brings patient art to life

A virtual gallery featuring art from inpatients and staff at Lynfield Mount Hospital and Airedale Centre for Mental Health has been launched by Bradford District Care NHS Foundation Trust.

The gallery has been created to help promote the benefit of art in fostering good mental health.

The artwork, described as “innovative and thought-provoking” by the trust, has been framed and put up in a new gallery space to create the ‘Grow’ exhibition at the Four Seasons Café at Lynfield Mount Hospital.

The creation of the gallery was funded by the trust’s Better Lives Charity, which aims to enhance the care provided through charitable activity by improving the physical and mental wellbeing of staff, patients, service users and families.

The idea came from Therapeutic Volunteer Coordinator Rachel Jones along with Lead Occupational Therapist Lorna Dunshire.

Rachel said: “The project has been a huge team effort including our exhibition curator volunteers, the occupational therapy team, and staff from the wards and estates.

The numbers and quality of artwork has been so impressive, we currently have around 30 pieces of artwork on display. We hope that this helps to open up the conversation about mental health and the therapeutic benefits of art.”

Commenting on the benefits of art in mental health recovery, a staff member who supported patients on the ward to get involved and contribute their artwork said: “It was wonderful to see patients engage in an amazing project, learning new skills and enjoying the outdoors during the photo walks. It showed them that they can achieve something they didn’t think they could and inspired more engagement in activities.”

As the café is only open to staff, patients, families and carers, making the gallery virtual allows it to reach a wider audience.

The virtual gallery can be viewed here.