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First arts exhibition at Wonford House Hospital – Public viewing 27 February

Posted on 30th January, 2006

The first arts exhibition at Wonford House Hospital in Exeter
SN ! AP - sees the work of one of the Trust’s service users, John Langley, on display until end of March 2006.  His photography graces the corridors and improves the environment for service users and staff who work at the hospital. John has been able to recover from his mental health problems, having suffered for nearly thirty five years before being diagnosed three years ago with a personality disorder. He has been successful in pursing his career as a photographer and the Trust is proud to be able to have a way of showing off his talents. As John comments: “What do you call a person who is an ‘outgoing recluse’, an ‘optimistic pessimist’ or ’life loving –suicide’? In a psychiatric reference book the diagnosis would be one of ‘personality disorder’. To those that know me well I’m just John Langley a master of opposites who has survived against odds that many would have crumbled when faced with.
Very few people can ever fully understand what it is like to face suicide on a daily basis. John knows full well. He adds: “So pretty much every day – weather permitting, I make a life saving journey, out somewhere with my camera, as a vital form of therapy which cancels out the feelings of darkness and despair.”
There will be a public viewing event on Monday 27th February from 11.00am - 4.00pm when John will be on hand to discuss and share his work with the public. There will also be an opportunity to purchase his work.
Research has shown that an aesthetically pleasing environment can reduce stress, relieve boredom and improve the public’s perception of the hospital. There are also obvious therapeutic benefits for people with mental health problems, when pursuing artistic activities and during 2006 artwork from other service users will be featured, with plans to further develop the arts project to other areas of the hospital site if successful.
The Exhibition will be on show at Trust Headquarters: Devon Partnership NHS Trust
Trust Headquarters
Wonford House Hospital
Dryden Road
Exeter EX2 5AF
Tel: 01392 403433