Creative Initiatives Exhibition

Academy of Arts, Seel Street (12:00-16:00)
27th September - 7th October 2005

Reviewed by Adam Ford

This incredible exhibition shows off the talents of people who are attempting to overcome problems with drug misuse on the Wirral. The Arch Initiatives facility in Conway Street, Birkenhead provides a range of rehabilitation services focusing on the psychological component of addiction. One of these courses gives clients an opportunity to create and sell their own artwork at an annual exhibition. From an artistic point of view, their inspiration and enthusiasm easily eclipses most on the arty circuit.

The artists have produced work in a wide variety of media – from light boxes and mosaics to paintings and mirrors. What they all have in common are vivid colour schemes and the passion to match. For reasons associated with their treatment, all the artists choose to remain anonymous artists choose to remain anonymous. All, that is, with the exception of ‘Glynn’ – painter of the wonderfully named ‘Mona Ethel’ amongst many others.

All the works are available for sale, with the prices barely covering the price of the materials. For example, the fantastic ceramics typically cost £3 and £1.50 each – and are therefore far cheaper than their inferior mass-produced factory equivalents.
Of course, it’s great that people with health problems are expressing themselves through art, but this is an exhibition that definitely deserves support on its own merit.

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