Mind Music

Northern Chamber Orchestra charity concert nco-parkinson-image

Cosmo Rodewald Concert Hall
Martin Harris Centre for Music and Drama
3 April 2016

Several members of our Medical Humanities Laboratory have been involved in this exciting project.

Book your tickets now! And let others know.

Conductor Stephen Barlow and the Northern Chamber Orchestra explore pieces related to neurodegenerative disease.

John Adams’ Gnarly Buttons reflects his father’s struggle with Alzheimer’s as does Kevin Malone’s Last Memory. The two solo clarinettists both recently lost a parent to Parkinson’s. Strauss’s poignant Serenade From an Invalid’s Workshop speaks for itself.

The concert will raise awareness of these issues. Proceeds will go to the charity Parkinson’s UK.


  • Aaron Copland: Appalacian Spring
  • John Adams: Gnarly Buttons
  • Kevin Malone: The Last Memory
  • Felix Mendelssohn: Konzertstueck No 1
  • Richard Strauss: Sonatine No 1 ‘From an Invalid’s Workshop’

To book please visit http://tinyurl.com/jzbq3pv  or phone the Martin Harris Centre Box Office.

Price: £15 / £7

Box Office:
0161 275 8951



What doesn’t kill us …

A collaborative exploration of identity and trauma


Manchester, 9-12 March 2016



Speakers, artists and contributors include Lemn Sissay MBE, Prof. Anthony Redmond OBE, Kim Noble, Bryony Kimmings, Hetain Patel, Prof. James Thompson, Quarantine, Nuffield Council on Bioethics, Das Arts (Amsterdam), Disability Arts Online, Prof. Jackie Stacy, Prof. Bobbie Farsides, Prof. Michael Brady, Prof. Matthew Cobb and Prof. Alex Sharpe with many more to follow.

The challenges of life and death may not make us stronger, but they certainly make us who we are. SICK! Lab explores the most challenging experiences that we live through and die from. These challenges are sometimes rooted in bodies and minds that fail us, sometimes in the complexities of living in an imperfect society with other imperfect individuals. From the difficulties of our daily lives to the experience of global traumas of conflict and displacement, how do our personal battles write themselves across our minds and bodies?

SICK! Lab is a focussed 4-day programme of performances, presentations and discussions bringing together artists, academics from a wide range of disciplines, clinicians, commentators and the public to explore questions connecting identity and trauma: Why do we find it so hard to be alone in our minds? What do we gain from and lose to our social groups? Who do we chose to be the objects of our compassion? How much are we still defined by all those traditional categories: Religion, ethnicity, nationality, gender, sexuality, disability?

Download the programme (pdf)

SICK! Lab 2016 generates discussion between widely differing perspectives and will inform the development of SICK! Festival March 2017. SICK! Festival confronts the physical, mental and social challenges of life and death, and how we survive them. Taking place in Brighton and Manchester, the festival brings together an outstanding international arts programme with perspectives from academic research, clinical practitioners, public health, charities and people with lived experience of the issues we address. SICK! Festival won the prestigious EFFE Festivals Award 2015/16 for excellence and innovation.

Tim Harrison
Director of Development

SICK! Festival
European EFFE Award Winner
Manchester and Brighton
T: +44 1273 699 733
M: +44 7868300065

Twitter @SICKFestival
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Museums for Health and Wellbeing conference

The National Alliance for Museums, Health & Wellbeing will be holding its first conference at the Whitworth Art Gallery on 2 March 2016. The programme will feature speakers from the health, social care and museum sectors who will explore the contribution museums can make to health & wellbeing from a range of different perspectives.


The day will offer opportunities for networking and sharing information about museum & wellbeing activities. A ‘market place’ area will showcase museums’ work in this field – download the open call for pop-up stands and/or posters by clicking on the link below if you are interested in participating.

Delegates can also take part in a range of practical, hands-on activities in the afternoon, including behind the scenes tours of the Whitworth; mindfulness sessions in the galleries; object handling for wellbeing workshops and walking tours of the gardens. The event will end with a performance and wine reception.

This one-day event is aimed at museum professionals looking to develop their health & wellbeing offer as well as those interested in working in partnership with museums including health and social care workers, artists and art-therapy practitioners.

Click this link for further information or contact National Alliance Coordinator Krisztina Lackoi, k.lackoi@ucl.ac.uk

Download the Open Call for Marketplace Participation (pdf)



Bedrock: exhibition of new artwork by Nicola Dale

Do you remember the workshop From Coal Mining to Data Mining we held in November? We are now inviting you to attend the opening of the exhibition associated with this project, of Nicola Dale‘s artwork inspired by historical arthritis research with coal miners as research subjects and by conversations with former miners.

21 January, 6-8pm (exhibition continues till 24 January)
ArtWork Atelier, 95 Greengate, Salford M3 7NG (entrance on Queen Street, about 5-10 minutes walk from Manchester Cathedra)

Here is a map

And here is an invitation on Nicola’s own blog site, with some interesting links.

Bedrock Poster

Download the poster (pdf)


Events at the Whitworth

Happy New Year to you all from the Medical Humanities Lab. Lab member Wendy Gallagher asked us to let you know about the following events held at the Whitworth Art Gallery.

Coffee, Cake and Culture

Making culture accessible to people living with dementia and their carers

Fully supported museum visits for people with dementia and their family members or care partners, on Thursdays the 28 January, 25 February, 31 March, 28 April and 26 May, from 2 to 4pm. Attendance free.

Coffee_cake_andCulture A4 online Dec2015[3]

Aesthetics of Anatomy

Life drawing classes in the study of anatomy. Last Thursday of every month, £5 per session – all materials provided. Book your sessions here.

Aesthetics Classes Online Dec2015

For more information, please contact wendy.gallagher@manchester.ac.uk




Not so grim up north: how can museums contribute to health and wellbeing?

The Whitworth Art Gallery and Manchester Museum are part of a new Arts Council funded research project looking at the impact of engaging in museum activities for individuals’ health and wellbeing. Not So Grim Up North (2015-2018) is a collaboration with Tyne & Wear Archives & Museums (TWAM), working with researchers at University College London (UCL).

The Whitworth and TWAM have been leading creative work in the field of health, culture and wellbeing for many years, with specifically developed arts and heritage programmes in partnership with local healthcare and social care services. Inspired by the collections of art and local history, the programmes offer behind-the-scenes tours and object handling; arts activities; sound recording; creative writing; and photography.


The Whitworth’s contemporary textiles handling resource

The research will explore how taking part in a museum or art gallery activity can have demonstrable health and wellbeing outcomes, through a longitudinal study using a mix-methods approach – that is, we will be using validated (quantitative) clinical scales alongside qualitative interviews to measure the impact of these activities over 18 months. The project will work with a range of audiences across the two regions, including adults with mental health issues, adults in addiction recovery, stroke rehabilitation patients, and older adults living with dementia; and will also bring together the perspectives of healthcare professionals and cultural professionals to explore the work of partnership. The project will contribute to better understanding the value of museum encounters on health and wellbeing.

Dr Nuala Morse is the Research Associate for the project, based at the Whitworth Art Gallery, University of Manchester. Nuala’s background crosses human geography, museum studies, participatory theory and the medical humanities, and her work is interested in the distinctive nature of the ‘social work’ of museums professionals; the role of the museum as a space of social care; and the role of culture in (mental health and addictions) recovery work. Nuala’s recent papers can be found here.

You can find out more about the research project here (please note some of these pages are under construction).

If you would like any further information please contact Nuala: Nuala.morse@manchester.ac.uk

Find out more about the museums’ programmes:


Pop-up Exhibition: The Medicine Cabinet

The Medicine Cabinet – Unlocking Manchester’s Medical History
Saturday 12 December 2015 11am – 4pm
Chetham’s Library
Long Millgate
Manchester M3 1SB


MA Art Gallery and Museum Studies students from the University of Manchester present a pop-up exhibition in collaboration with the Museum of Medicine and Health.

Discover the wonders of Manchester’s medical history in the beautiful surrounds of Chetham’s Library – open for one day only!