Gallery 3


Art addressing stigma in illness

30 October 2020 - 13 June 2021


This transdisciplinary project between the Stellenbosch University’s departments of Visual Arts and Physiological Sciences, artists and community members aims to use art as a way to address stigmatisation regarding mental illness and neurodegeneration-related illnesses.

This is a collaborative learning process for internal and external stakeholders, whereby students start to understand the needs of the community, with regard to stigmatisation of the indicated illnesses, and can communicate their own scientific research to communities in an accessible and understandable manner.

This project aligns with three Stellenbosch University (SU) themes and Social Impact Strategic Plan strategies:

  1. a) Education for all,
  2. b) Social justice/Reducing inequalities
  3. c) Good health and well-being.

It will have an impact by enhancing health in communities through improving communication by using indigenous arts. Through this making the latest research on neurodegenerative disease (such as Alzheimer’s disease) and mental illness (such as depression) available to health educators and community members.

The exhibition comprises of images of cell structures, fluorescence images, artworks and crafts. This presents a unique opportunity to harness science micrographs in cross-talk, thereby enhancing science by communicating in a unique and powerful manner.

Local artists and crafters include:

Gerald Choga, Portia Mphangwa, Nomsa Mukwira, Zacharia Mukwira, Simon Shumi and Zingisa Vula.

View the exhibition brochure for more information on the project, community, artists and artwork here.