By Laurie Finklestein
2017 Art Classic Entry
The Story of MENTAL MADNESS
The purpose of Mental Madness is to help break the stigma associated with mental illness by bringing attention to the disorders. 1 in 5 American’s struggle with mental illnesses and it should not be a “silent” condition. We need to be able to discuss our disorders openly like diabetes or heart disease. There is no shame in having a mental illness and the more we speak up about it, the more we can help and support each other.
The painting illustrates what it feels like to be in the midst of a crushing depression, a panic attack, or a schizophrenic episode, for example. There are 7 layers in 6 colors of the repeated words, anxiety, depression, bi-polar, OCD, schizo-effective, schizophrenia, suicide, panic, to name a few. They are repeated in no particular order, from 3 inch lettering down to 1/4 inch. The figure in the lower right corner is the physical expression of the mental madness occurring in the mind and the red surrounding the figure is the metaphorical blood that is shed before, during, and after, a bad episode. The white canvas left in between the colored lettering represents the hope of recovery, more research, more services, and more compassion. If you or a loved one is dealing with mental illness and need support, contact NAMI, the National Alliance of Mental Illness