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Artist Panel Explores Art & Mental Illness

Artist Panel Explores Art & Mental Illness
Jan 20, 2022, Midland, MI. – Creative 360 is working with the National Alliance on
Mental Illness to put a spotlight on mental health. A program featuring artists from the
current exhibit Breaking the Stigma: Art as a Bridge to Understanding, Empathy, &
Acceptance, and poet Stephanie Heit will share a glimpse into the power of art as a
healing tool.
The artist panel will feature Michigan artists Rebecca Allen, artist/author David Feingold,
artist/Creative 360 co-founder Cynthia Keefe, and Allise Noble. Each with different
mental health experiences. In addition to the panel, the evening will begin and end with
readings from Midland native queer/disabled poet, dancer and teacher, Stephanie Heit.
“The battles these artists have fought are extremely personal, but not as uncommon as
you’d think. Multiple visitors to the exhibit recognize truths in these stories from people
they’ve met or personal experience,” said public relations coordinator Laura Brigham.
“What is important is that they are making themselves heard.”
When Creative 360 founder Linda Z saw the Midland Daily News feature on the January
exhibit opening, she immediately reached out to our curator Colleen Reed. “I am so
pleased with this exhibition,” said Linda Z, “I was reminded of Stephanie Heit, a former
dancer from our Not Just Vanilla program. It struck me right away that her poetry fit
perfectly with the exhibit’s theme.”
Heit is a Zoeglossia Fellow, shock/psych system survivor, bipolar, mad activist, and a
member of the Olimpias, an international disability performance collective.
Her poetry has been added to the exhibit at Creative 360, and her book The Color She
Gave Gravity will be available for purchase.
The artists panel is Feb 17 at 7pm. Admission is free, however Creative 360 is requesting
attendees make a charitable donation to NAMI Midland, an affiliate of the National
Alliance on Mental Illness. This nonprofit organization supports and empowers
individuals, and their families, who are living with mental illness and they are committed
to fighting against stigma and facilitating access to resources for everyone affected by
mental illness.
Let us know you are coming online at or by calling the arts center at

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