Friday, 15 March 2013

Dementia and Art

Claire’s putting people in the picture on dementia
8:47am Friday 15th March 2013 in News

AN art project aimed at bringing greater understanding of dementia has been launched at the Royal Bolton Hospital.

Award-winning artist Claire Tindale spent two days a week for three months at the hospital, funded by the Arts Council, to create a series of thought-provoking photographs.
She talked to staff, patients and relatives on three complex care wards to help understand the journey patients with dementia often make from home to residential care.

Her work, which is displayed on the hospital’s first floor corridor between C and B Block, has now been unveiled.

The photographs show tiny models including a medical records trolley, a commode and a walking frame, which are each cradled in a pair of hands.

Three of the models are on show across the wards involved in the project.

Ms Tindale said: "The images are symbolic of the vulnerability of people with dementia and the responsibility of those people who care for them.
"The idea came to me from my discussions with staff, patients and families at the hospital and I’d like to thank them all for their interest and support." Her previous work on dementia includes images of doll’s house furniture showing an empty lounge in a home for older people, a design of forget-me-not wallpaper with gaps in the pattern, and her award-winning photograph album "Memory Loss" with captions but no photographs.

Bolton NHS Foundation Trust says it is committed to understanding and caring for people with dementia and supporting their families.

The unveiling comes just days after an event involving more than 150 health professionals to mark the start of making Bolton a dementia-friendly town.

In Bolton, 1,601 people have been diagnosed with dementia while an estimated 3,026 dementia sufferers have not been diagnosed.

Pat Graham, the Trust’s lead on dementia, said: "It is important we are all attuned to the needs of people with dementia and their families.

"Claire’s work on the wards preparing for the final artworks was enlightening in itself in her discussions about dementia with patients, families and staff."

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