Summerhall – one of the Festival Venues

Edinburgh’s status as a ‘festival city’ is reinforced by the arrival of the Mental Health Arts and Film Festival which runs throughout October. Now in its seventh year, the Festival is said to be bigger and better than ever. Its programme covers theatre, film, music, art and literature, all turning the spotlight on mental health.

Mental Health Festival LogoLinda Irvine, Strategic Programme Manager, Mental Health and Wellbeing, NHS Lothian, that the organisations was “delighted to be a part of the 2013 Scottish Mental Health and Arts Film Festival. Over the last seven years, our local festival has gone from strength to strength. In collaboration with a range of arts and voluntary sector organisations, there are a wealth of events taking place including exhibitions, film, storytelling, drama, theatre and poetry. We are excited to continue our local and national partnership and would encourage everyone to get involved.”

A provocative, collaborative exhibition set in the unique spaces of Summerhall’s Old Animal Hospital will officially launch the Lothian festival tomorrow night (Friday). The exhibition will explore perceptions of reality, labelling, discrimination, confinement and medication in a range of site specific artworks, photography, painting and narrative.

Lee Knifton, Festival Director explained that the event was “about social justice; it’s about tackling stigma, exploring mental health identities and connecting people and organisations that otherwise wouldn’t meet. And it’s about creating space – not just for great art – but for exploring what art can tell us about mental health and about identity.”

The organisers have produced the trailer video below.

SMHAFF 2013 trailer from SMHAFF on Vimeo.