Barbara Dean is a North London based artist practicing in live and visual art. She has made work nationally and internationally, and has been presenting her work in events, exhibitions, festivals and live art platforms, since 2001.
She has made work collaboratively and individually, within and across a broad spectrum of culturally diverse artists and audiences.
Barbara has been funded by The Arts Council England, and been a past recipient on the Artsadmin bursary award scheme.
Home page photograph Pablo Goikoetxea, Tate Britain 2011
© Barbara Dean 2016
Welcome and thank you for visiting my website.
I am interested in notions of the therapeutic both within my practice as a painter and as a live artist. It appears to be a given understanding today, that the art making process is a therapeutic experience, both for the artist and the audience. However, if this is so, how does the experience become therapeutic without being or becoming a form of therapy?
I first became interested in challenging this term 'therapeutic' whilst working as an arts educator for the Mental Health charity Mind-In-Enfield. Learners often use the term 'therapeutic', to describe their experience of watching paint fuse with water. One observant learner commented "it just seems to take you outside yourself". An inspiring response to water colour paints, particularly in terms of the body, and in relation to watching the paint move. Since then I have been developing a Paint & Performance workshop, which uses paint to challenge the creative process.