The Big Anxiety

Australian and international artists, scientists and technology experts will join forces to re-imagine the state of mental health in the 21st century from 20 September to 11 November for the ‘The Big Anxiety’ an initiative of the University of New South Wales (UNSW) in association with the Black Dog Institute. Sixty events across Sydney will stage a range of media and experiences from exhibitions to theatre and the art of conversation in an effort to create meaningful encounters that increase curiosity and empathy, decrease stigma, support neuro-diversity and promote psychological and emotional well-being in our society.

Abdul-Rahman Abdullah, Practical Magic, 2016, stained wood, nylon rope. Courtesy the artist and THIS IS NO FANTASY + dianne tanzer gallery, Melbourne

A number of exhibitions will be held across Sydney, we encourage you to check the festival’s comprehensive website for more detail. ‘We Are All Affected’ is an exhibition co-curated by Khaled Sabsabi and Nur Shkembi on view at Fairfield City Museum and Gallery and Peacock Gallery from 21 September, which aims to challenge and reflect on the negatively framed public discussions about Australian Muslims. At the Japan Foundation ‘Holding a Deep Breath’ explores climate change and eco-anxiety with work from Kosuke Tsumura, Hiromi Tango, Ken and Julia Yonetani, Emily Parsons-Lord and Yumi Umiumare.

Sixty-five per cent of Australians with a mental health condition don’t seek help. As such the ‘The Big Anxiety’ hopes to engage audiences with a huge range of activities, shows and performances. Hubs for events will be located at Customs House, Riverside Theatres Parramatta, UNSW Art & Design, Paddington, 4a Centre for Contemporary Asian Art and other galleries across Sydney.