Being creative can be a really useful way for people to express their feelings about OCD and how it impacts on their lives. We recently connected with professional artist Zara Carpenter, who has tried to turn her diagnosis of OCD into a positive, by channelling the behaviours to enhance and influence the artwork she creates.
We asked Zara to tell us a bit more about two exciting upcoming exhibitions where she will be displaying her work:
"My name is Zara and I am an artist.
I obsessively make and each process is part of a repetitious act of creating. I was diagnosed with Obsessive Compulsive Disorder in my early 20s, over the years I have learnt to use this behaviour to enhance my creative practice. I am drawn to techniques that allow me to calm myself by following a specific routine like print making and photography."
RITUAL- The Crypt Gallery St Pancras
"In this new series of work I take polaroid photographs of myself - mostly in short bursts of compulsive activity often creating many at a time. I attack the surface whilst the image is still developing, disrupting the chemistry and bruising the emulsion creating abstractions and forming ghosts or echoes of what might have been once the photograph developed."
Exhibition is on 16th - 21 May 10.00-6.00pm
Opening Night 16th May 6.00-9.00pm
A CONSTANT COMPANION- Free Space Project, Kentish Town
"One of my earliest memories as a small child was laying in bed at night rubbing my legs to soothe them. Pain has walked beside me for most of my life, a constant companion. In this exhibition I will show works from past and present projects exploring pain, from the ritual of taking medication in ‘The Painkiller Prints’ to visualising both physical and psychological trauma with the ongoing series ’Distress’.
My artistic practice investigates the hidden aspects of living with a chronic invisible illness (fibromyalgia, hypermobility and OCD). My work crosses various media; print making and photography often using materials of an ephemeral nature.
This exhibition and current work has been supported by Art Council England, Developing Your Creative Practice Grant."
Exhibition is on April 19th - 30th Aug
Artist Talk 19th June https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/artist-talk-zara-carpenter-tickets-59405461334