Norwich artists showcase their work at special city exhibition

Artist Rory Bowskill with some of his work on show at The Wall exhibition in the Forum.PHOTO BY SIMO

Artist Rory Bowskill with some of his work on show at The Wall exhibition in the Forum.PHOTO BY SIMON FINLAY - Credit: Archant Norfolk

A Norwich-based group of artists with mental health problems is showing a selection of its work at the Forum in Norwich.

It is the first time the The Well project has exhibited at the city centre venue, and a mixture of painting, print and pottery is on sale to the public.

Each member of the group works from home, and they take part in about eight to 10 events throughout the year, joining in with stalls at celebrations and other big occasions.

Group member Rory Bowskill, from Norwich, has been an artist for about eight years, and moved to the city in the 1990s. He is exhibiting six acrylic works in the exhibition, and said: 'It's important that people realise we are Norwich artists with mental health issues rather than the other way round.

'Anyone looking at my work here would not realise that my main problem is depression, because there's so much fun in the work.

'Being an artist is a way of combating mental health problems and it helps fight against the illness quite a bit. This exhibition also shows that there's a group of us doing this rather than sitting at home on our backsides. It shows what can be done and also helps us to become a part of the community.'

The group, which meets monthly at the Workshop, in Earlham Road, Norwich, has been able to exhibit at the Forum thanks to a grant from the Big Lottery Fund. It was one of 39 projects across the eastern region sharing £279,912 of Awards for All funding, and its £646 share is being used to hire The Forum space.

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The project was formed in 2006 as a way for artists in Norfolk who experience mental distress to provide support and development for each other.

It is run by the artists themselves.

As well as holding its own exhibitions, The Well collaborates with the Norfolk and Suffolk Foundation Trust to organise the annual Fruits of the Mind, exhibition which is open to anyone in Norfolk and Suffolk who has experienced mental health problems.

The Forum exhibition started on Monday, April 29, and finishes tomorrow at 4.30pm.

To find out more about the group, people can go along to its next meeting at the Workshop at 11am on May 8. Or visit

Have you organised an exhibition in Norwich? Call reporter David Bale on 01603 772427 or email