Contemporary Craft

Mindful: Exploring Mental Health Through Art

Exhibit designed by:

Janet McCall, Contemporary Craft,

Kate Lydon, Contemporary Craft,

Display period: 2015-2018 (multiple locations)


Impact Upon Exhibition Trend:

Until 2015/16, exhibitions and museums about mental health focused almost exclusively on the historic treatment of mental illness. Using art and its open-ended interpretation as a springboard, Mindful plays a critical role in liberating exhibit-based conversations and dialogue about mental health and mental illness. Contemporary Craft’s work is also groundbreaking in terms of their development of a strategy to travel an exhibition about mental health and transfer know-how from one venue to the next. This exhibition ultimately traveled to several states in the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic. 



Michael Janis, Echoes, 2015, Kilnformed glass, glass powder imagery 10” x 30” x 4” Photo: Anything Photographic. 

The National Museum of Mental Health Project, Inc. is a nonprofit organization and “museum without walls” that researches and creates exhibitions that can transform society’s attitudes about, and understanding of, mental health. Through the development of online exhibits, NMMHP does what museums do best – educate, interpret, advance dialogue, and develop literacy on the topic of mental health. 


The Project seeks to:

  • Develop and display exhibitions by facilitating collaboration among artists, curators, mental health professionals, people with lived experience, and others who seek to share talents and knowledge.

  • Share research related to exhibits about mental health and wellness.

  • Build alliances with community, local, and national not-for-profit, for-profit, governmental, and educational entities who are similarly interested in creating positive mental health outcomes.

  • Develop a national museum of mental health.

The Project extends from a research fellowship at Assumption University.