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Art for Mental Health

Jump to: Artworks & Artists - Public Programs - Art and Mental Health Resources 

Art for Mental Health is a project that celebrates the capacity of creativity to cultivate wellbeing.

The City of Ryde is showcasing the work of five local artists from Insideout Gallery at Macquarie Hospital and Cornucopia Community Art Group - Virginia Bucknell, Penny Fell, Hae-Lyun Kang, Susan Miles, and Carol Purcell.

Original artworks will be displayed as flags and installed around Top Ryde from 4 November to 4 December 2020. Artworks will also be available as free collectable postcards distributed around Coxs Road in North Ryde, Top Ryde, City of Ryde Libraries and more.

Making art can be a powerful way to express ourselves, share our stories and find points of commonality and connection. The art that surrounds can also help us to better understand the varied lives and experiences of the people that make up our community.

This project is a collaboration between the City of Ryde, Insideout Gallery and Cornucopia Art Group. It aims to spotlight local artists and develop awareness of mental health resources and communities of support in the City of Ryde. 

Insideout Gallery a professional studio and gallery space for developing and emerging artists who are impacted by mental health experiences. It is located at Macquarie Hospital, North Ryde and is actively supported by Mental Health Drug and Alcohol, Northern Sydney Local Health District.

Cornucopia Community Art Group is a group for members of the Ryde community who access mental health services.

Artwork & Artists

Virginia-Bucknell.jpg Virginia Bucknell

Virginia-Bucknell-Artwork.jpg I am a performance artist turned visual artist and what interests me and excites me is local landscape, portraits and abstract art that is dynamic and has reference to my interest in dance. My preferred media is oil on canvas though I also work with acrylic and mixed media. I choose Materials that best expresses my creative ideas and concepts. The idea behind my banner design is it’s a memory of my mother and a celebration of the time when we could dance together which we can’t do at the moment because of Covid.

Penny-Fells.jpg Penny Fell

Penny-Fells-Artwork.jpg I’ve been a member of the Cornicopia art group for approximately 15 years now. I was one of the founding members. My interest is drawing mostly but I also paint. I’ve enjoyed drawing a variety of fish, plants and animals. Sometimes I do abstract work which is usually patterns. I am interested in colour shape and form. I’m very focused on my art making when I’m doing it and enjoy the concentration and dedication to my making. I attend the Cornucopia art group regularly and enjoy it very much.

Hae-Lyun-Kang.jpg Hae-Lyun Kang

Hae-Lyun-Kang-Artwork.jpg I’m a lover of nature and nature uplifts the soul. Having mental illness means your perspective is tilted on its axis for people, things and situations. I think I had a strange life in how my brother shot at Prince Charles (by firing two blank shots of a starting pistol) as it turned my life upside down and it meant living life on the road less travelled.

Susan-Miles.jpg Susan Miles

Susan-Miles-Artwork.jpg I only began to attend the Cornucopia art class in 2019. The teacher is a very dear and lovely friend. I’ve mainly done watercolours and pencil drawings. In class I’ve tried painting on canvas and I feel my work, while simple in my opinion, has improved since coming to this class. I’m enjoying the group and I am pleased that I am making some creative progress. I regard nature to be my lesson book and plants and animals interest me as a theme when making my art.

Carol-Purcell.jpgCarol Purcell

Carol-Purcell-Artwork.jpgI have been coming to the Cornucopia art group at Gladesville Art school for approximately 15 years now. I’m one of the regulars. I enjoy drawing mostly and especially birds and animals. I enjoy drawing birds because I find them interesting and the detail is a challenge for me to record accurately which I believe I do. I like all things in nature and I like the environment that I find myself with birds and other animals. For this reason I’ve chosen these as my subject for the Ryde Council banner project.


Public Programs

Writing for Wellbeing

Wednesday 24 November - 6 pm to 8 pm & Friday 27 November - 10 am to 12 pm

Tap into your creative side and set your inner storyteller free! These free and inclusive workshops are beginner-friendly. Using intuition, imagination and description, participants will be guided through a series of short writing exercises to enhance confidence and creativity in a safe and respectful space. During COVID-19, these workshops have been adapted for online delivery so participants can join from the comfort of home. View more details.

Art and Mental Health Resources

Insideout Gallery

Insideout Gallery’s primary mission is to provide a professional gallery space for developing and emerging artists who are impacted by mental health experiences.  They provide a venue for art exhibitions that celebrate creativity, challenge stigma and promote a better understanding of mental health, and human experience. As part of this the Insideout Gallery aims to provide the opportunity and support for exhibiting artists to develop and maintain their professional art practice.

Insideout Gallery is located at the Northern Sydney Education Conference Centre on the grounds of Macquarie Hospital in North Ryde. It is actively supported by Mental Health Drug and Alcohol, Northern Sydney Local Health District.

Contact: Jasmine Steven on (02) 9887 5698 or

Cornucopia Community Art Group

Cornucopia Community Art Group is a group for members of the Ryde community who access Mental Health Services.

Cornucopia Community Art Group meets every Tuesday at the art shed on the Gladesville Hospital grounds. There are two sessions which run 10am - 12pm and 12pm - 2pm. Some people come to one or both sessions. One session is $5. Two sessions is $10. Artists bring their own materials.

The teacher is artist Dr Neville Dawson, Dr of Creative Arts and former Head of Visual Arts Newington College.

Contact: Dr Neville Dawson on 0407149451 for more information.

Further Resources

For more mental health services in the City of Ryde head to the Mental Health Support page. 

Social Inclusion Week

Join the City of Ryde as we all come together as a community to celebrate Social Inclusion Week, which will be held from 21–29 November 2020.

The week will be dedicated to promoting the benefits of social inclusion and how we can all work together to create conditions that allows everyone to have equal opportunities.

Find out More


Related Information

Last updated on 1 July 2021