Does using your body make you happy?

Join a workshop at the heart of the campus on World Mental Health day to explore how moving your body can affect your happiness. It’s World Mental Health Day on Wednesday 10 October and we’ve got lots of great events planned at the Indoor Sports Centre. As well as lots of free exercise classes, you can join in a workshop with a print artist Annie Nicholson, aka The Fandangoe Kid:

Annie, swathed in colourful, vibrant clothing, with a shock of blonde hair crowning a tall frame, has a story of loss so devastating it sounds almost too heavy to carry. It’s a story she has used to help others explore big topics like love, life and grief, through shared artistic experiences. 

In 2011, the artist lost her mother and sister in a car crash. “Nothing has been the same since,” she said. “For years I was completely derailed – it was sharing my thoughts in a public space that got me through.”

The artist says her public art is also designed to help remove the stigma that still exists around loss, mental health, and happiness.
“I’ve done a lot of movement and dance,” she said. “It’s not about telling people to spend ‘x’ amount of hours at the gym. “I want to explore how movement, any kind of movement or sport, can help you shed layers and work through something. I didn’t run before my family died, not even down the street. For me it’s what happens while you’re running.
“Running a marathon could be seen as a ritual – kind of like a meditation. Something as simple as having a dance every morning has helped me survive.”
The workshop can host 20 people and will begin with exploring the different concepts of narrative art, and how art can be used to express yourself. “I’d like to create a bit of a survival toolkit, and ask people to think about this, incorporating movement.”

The event is 10.00am – 12.00am in Studio 3 at the Indoor Sports Centre on Tyndall Avenue and is open to staff or students. The art we create will go on display throughout the campus. As places are limited, it’s important to book in advance.