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BA Art Student- Help please


Registered User
Nov 23, 2006
My name is Nicole and I am in my final year studying Fine Art at the University of Bedfordshire. My work for my final year is based on Alzheimers and how it effects ones identity. This reason I choose to centre my art work around this subject is that my grandmother suffered with it and I want to raise awareness. My aim is to use personal experiences (my own included) to create art that will be thought provoking and demand attention. If anyone is willing to share their experiences with me I would be most grateful.
Thanks, Nicole


Registered User
Jan 31, 2004
near London
Hi Nicole,

well, I'm not going to be much help to you, but I wanted to ensure you had at least one reply!

the problem is, from a carer's perspective, that the definitive art has already probably been done by Edvard Munsch - "The Scream"

On a more helpful note, perhaps you might consider the fact that normal people looking from the outside, with no perception, see just the mask of dementia that hides the person beneath. Unless attempts are made [and leeway is given] then it is not possible to see that the person is still there. Someone once likened it on here to the person with dementia being like a fine violin, but hopelessly out of tune, so that when someone plays it - everything comes out wrongly, even though all the right things are done.

I also saw it once when a friend, an expert harpist, started a recital and stopped immediately, because the pedals were not working properly. With a harp, it is the pedals that define completely what comes out [not just sharps and flats], and she was horrified to hear dreadful notes come out when she was making all the right moves. Perhaps a harp is a better allegory than a violin.

Fogs might be a good comparison, sometimes dense, the next minute clear, never sure when the next dense patch will occur.

Communication with a person with dementia [especially late stage dementia] is difficult, but they ARE in there, if we but have the patience and the sensitivity to look. That itself can be heartbreaking.

The advent of dementia on people less than 65 years of age - sometimes much younger than that - is quite common, yet not appreciated by the public, but most of all by officialdom - there is precious little support for sufferers and carers alike. This Early Onset Dementia is almost the worst illness that I can conceive of.

Anger, fear, despair, frustration, depression: all feature, but most of all, love.

Good luck and please let us know how your work develops.
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Registered User
Nov 23, 2006
Thank you!!

Thank you so much for replying to me. The things you mentioned are really interesting and the analogies are definatley worth persuing in regards to my work. The thing that would really help me understand is to read or gain access to a diary of a carer, I feel this would be the closest way to beginning to comprehend what it is like to deal with 24/7. It's a sensitive issue obviously but i really want to make something worthwhile - to get people to stand up and address it with success. I don't suppose anyone has ever published anything or the sort? Or you have any advice on me gaining any material? Once again thank you for your help. Nicole

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