Any views expressed within media held on this service are those of the contributors, should not be taken as approved or endorsed by the University, and do not necessarily reflect the views of the University in respect of any particular issue.
Press "Enter" to skip to content

Nigeria-Scotland Arts Exchange

On 26th September 2023 we hosted a collaborative event in partnership with Arts in Medicine Projects, Nigeria (AiMP) to explore the role of the arts in dementia care across different cultural contexts. Part of Global South Arts & Health Week, the online event sought to foster connections and foundations that can fuel future innovation and research that places intercultural knowledge-exchange as central to the arts and dementia, with a specific focus on how to involve and provide opportunities for early career researchers. In this blog, we explore why this event was important and what was discussed through text and visual illustrations created live at the event by Dave Pratt.

Thank you to the British Academy Early Career Research Network for funding this event.

Background to the event

‘Arts and health’ is a rapidly burgeoning field exploring the role of the arts in improving health and wellbeing. However, the presence of those from the Global South in the field is limited, with Western notions of both ‘arts’ and ‘health’ dominating. More needs to be done to engage in international knowledge-exchange and to collaborate across countries to ensure more equitable research practices. In a step towards addressing this, this event brought together early career researchers and others working in the field of arts and health from Nigeria and Scotland to engage in an online knowledge-exchange. We focused specifically on the topic of the arts and dementia, but also explored broader topics and priority areas in arts and health.

What happened

The event began with a Welcome from Dr Katey Warran (ECRED, University of Edinburgh) and introduction to Global South Arts & Health Week from Festival Directors Ashley Stewart and Yinka Enahoro. They talked about four key areas that the festival is focusing on – Environmental and Climate Change, Child Mental Health, Maternal Health and Maternal Mental Health, and Brain Health and Ageing – with this event aligning with the theme of Brain Health.

Following our introductions, Scottish Ballet delivered a dance taster to show how dance can support those living with dementia, drawing upon insights from their Time to Dance® programme. We got active, including clapping, stretching and waving our arms!

We then came to the main knowledge-exchange part of our event: break-out groups.

Each group included one presentation from an early career researcher and one presentation from someone working in the field of arts and dementia. Presenters included John Adenle, Valeria Lembo, Lisa Sinclair, Emily Davis, Funmi Akindejoye, Lucy Forde, Martin Robertson, Dan Johnston, and Katey Warran. We used Jamboard (online pin board) to explore priority areas for the future of research and practice across five artistic practices: crafts, dance, nature, music, and virtual reality.

Following the break-out rooms, everyone fed back to the larger group. Key points discussed included:

  • Provide international opportunities and fellowships that will bring together students and individuals from various parts of the world for research and training in arts and dementia.
  • Use arts practices as methodologies to support people living with dementia who find verbal or traditional research methods challenging.
  • Invite some people living with dementia from Scotland to Nigeria and vice-versa to take part in creative activities and a knowledge-exchange.
  • Use cross-disciplinary, equitable approaches to research and practice.
  • Involve those with lived experience at every stage of projects.

We then all engaged in an incredible origami energizer activity facilitated by Oluwatobi Sodimu. Green and blue papers were folded together to show the bringing together of Nigeria and Scotland.

Thank you to everyone who attended our event! We very much hope to continue collaborations with all those involved. To view the full illustrations from the event, please click here.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


Report this page

To report inappropriate content on this page, please use the form below. Upon receiving your report, we will be in touch as per the Take Down Policy of the service.

Please note that personal data collected through this form is used and stored for the purposes of processing this report and communication with you.

If you are unable to report a concern about content via this form please contact the Service Owner.

Please enter an email address you wish to be contacted on. Please describe the unacceptable content in sufficient detail to allow us to locate it, and why you consider it to be unacceptable.
By submitting this report, you accept that it is accurate and that fraudulent or nuisance complaints may result in action by the University.