5th Annual Exhibition
October 10-11 (10am-4.30pm)
October 12 (10am-3pm)
King’s Centre, King Street, Norwich
Official opening to be performed by Bill Farrow, non-executive director at Norfolk and Waveney Mental Health Partnership NHS Trust, on October 10 at 12.30pm.
Living in the present
Artist William Fairbank is living in the present – he has no choice. A head injury 20 years ago left him with no short-term memory and unable to think into the future.
“There is no future with short term memory loss,” he said. “You need to have a past, which you remember before you can make decisions for the future – for me, it’s all about the here and now.”
Determined not to let his disability get the better of him, William, a trained carpenter and joiner, is now a full-time artist. Three years after the accident, he started on a project to create a set of 15 Stations of the Cross – ‘Forest Stations’ – which were completed seven years later and put on display in Norwich Cathedral. They were exhibited in cathedrals around the country before being put in permanent display in Lincoln Cathedral. Due to his short term memory loss, he has no recollection of making them.
As well as intricate woodwork and sculptures, he produces short films, some of which discuss the personal experiences of people with head injuries and memory loss.
He is one of the exhibitors at the fifth annual Fruits of the Mind exhibition in Norwich, which opens on World Mental Health Day – Wednesday 10 October – and runs until the Friday. His series of films, Living in the Present, will be accompanied by sculptures depicting a double helix, which are a representation of his state of mind.
Also exhibiting on the day, alongside pieces from people with severe mental ill health, will be Michelle Lock. Michelle, a self-taught artist, worked hard to overcome her illness and has now managed to return to work, having completed a course in floristry.
Oil paintings, acrylics, postcards, crafts and sculptures from between 30 and 40 artists are among the pieces on display, with prices ranging from £15 to £250.
Angela Langrish-Smith, a practice nurse at Norfolk and Waveney Mental Health Partnership NHS Trust, said: “There are very good pieces of work on display and for sale, with lots of expression. People have worked so hard to do this and have put so much of themselves into it.”