Westmeath Cathaoirleach Cllr. John Shaw to launch ‘Look Beyond’ photovoice research exhibition in The Atrium, Mullingar

Where: The Atrium, Westmeath County Council Buildings, Jail Hill, Mount St, Bellview, Mullingar, Co. Westmeath

When: Tuesday 13th February, 5:30pm

Westmeath Cathaoirleach, Cllr. John Shaw, will launch ‘Look Beyond’, a photovoice research exhibition, in the Atrium Mullingar, Co. Westmeath on Tuesday 13th February at 5:30pm. ‘Look Beyond’ is an exhibition of photographs taken by a group of sixteen people who have experienced what it is like to live with mental health difficulties. The exhibition has been organised by See Change, the National Mental Health Stigma Reduction Partnership with the help of the Arts Office in Westmeath County Council.

Speakers on the evening include actress and Westmeath native Mary McEvoy, See Change’s Celine Moran, Shine’s Midlands Regional Development Officer Karen Boylan and Look Beyond participant photographer Neil Kelders.

The exhibition is an output of a research project commissioned by See Change and conducted by Dr. Maria Quinlan and Dr. Etain Quigley from University College Dublin and Maynooth University. Photovoice is a research and advocacy methodology which uses photography as a way of giving voice to people who often feel unheard and unseen in society. It has been used internationally to both explore and raise awareness of the stigma associated with experiencing mental health problems.

Speaking ahead of the launch, actress Mary McEvoy said, “In terms of mental health issues, we have learned to talk the talk and that’s wonderful but now we must walk the walk, this will be a challenge but an exciting one.”

Look Beyond participant photographer and See Change ambassador Neil Kelders added, “I really enjoyed taking part in ‘Look Beyond’. Photography is a good way of capturing the essence of things that can’t be explained easily through words alone. It was a great to be able to explore some of my experiences in a new and creative way”.

All are welcome to attend the launch.

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