Dundee and Me: How the City Shapes our Moods.
January - May 2018
Fhionna Moore (Psychology) and Eddie Small (Humanities) of the University of Dundee, and Robin Sloan of Abertay University will be working with local school children and mental health service users to explore the links between our local environments and our emotional wellbeing. Participants will work together with students of Dundee and Abertay Universities to produce creative writing, computer and performance art that demonstrates how our environment can influence how we feel. The project will culminate in a performance and exhibition for friends and families, which will also be posted online for wider dissemination.
Outcome: The participants produced art work, photography, creative writing, and performance art in the workshops. From the interactions and work produced by the participants, Robin Sloan, Conor Marshall and other students from Abertay produced two digital games (one for each of the two groups worked with). Evaluation data showed that the majority of participants and volunteers enjoyed the project and found it had increased their understanding of how our city shapes our mood. A short film describing the project is available to view here.
A computer game to educate the public about cancer progression
Dr Adrian Saurin is a cancer biologist studying cell division at the School of Medicine and he received funding for an interdisciplinary collaboration to develop a computer game to educate teenagers about how cancer develops and why various risk factors affect that development. The collaboration involves a computer games lecturer (Dr Robin Sloan, Abertay), a medical artist (Dr Caroline Erolin, CAHID/DJCAD), a cancer prevention specialist (Prof Annie Anderson, School of Medicine), and two experts in using games for education (Prof Divya Jindal-Snape and Mr Derek Robertson, School of Education and Social Work). The idea is to allow players try to control the spread of mutant cells that gain cancer hallmarks as a result of DNA mutations. This way the players experience for themselves how cancer develops and why risk factors make the game much harder to control.
September 2018 – June 2019
The project responds to current research into Parkinson's disease led by Professor Miratul Muqit in collaboration with the artist Daksha Patel. It consists of three strands of activity:
- An Artist Residency of one week in the MRC-PPU laboratories in the School of Life Sciences, looking at the experimental approaches being undertaken to better understand the molecular underpinings of Parkinson's. Daksha will return to Dundee for a three week period based in the print studio at Dundee Contemporary Arts to develop a series of new prints in response to her drawings.
- Four Art Workshops with a group of Parkinson’s patients exploring different art making processes in response to scientific imagery. We are interested in evaluating their perceptions of body movements through drawing. At the first workshop, Professor Muqit and Daksha Patel will present their research and drawings in relation to Parkinson's to the group.
- A solo show at GENERATOR projects in Dundee for one week in June 2019. This will include an artist talk where Daksha will share her experiences of this project and a session between Daksha and Miratul in which they will reflect on the collaboration.
Living with a skin condition: Understanding experiences of eczema and psoriasis in the UK.
Professor Sara Brown is a Professor of Molecular & Genetic Dermatology at the School of Medicine and will be working with Ms Georgie Edmonds a Medical Anthropologist and Consultant Dermatologists, Dr Sandy McBride (Royal Free Hospital, London) and Prof Catherine Smith, (Guys & St Thomas’ Hospital, London).
The project is aimed to investigate an observed difference in response to the request for skin biopsy; an essential resource for molecular research. Patients who have psoriasis tend to say 'yes' compared with patients who have eczema who more often say 'no'. The project wants to determine if this difference exists, and if it does, observe the reasons why, in order to increase understanding of perceptions and responses provided by patients.
Patients will be interviewed by Ms Georgie Edmonds who has considerable experience of interviewing patients. Following analysis, the findings will be shared with the patients involved and provide a lay summary for the relevant patient support groups: Eczema Outreach Support and the Psoriasis Association. The aim is to publish the findings to inform the medical and research communities.