Event / 11 May – 14 May 2022

Mental Health Awareness Week

Suzie Larke, Jo Haycock, Iko-Ono Mercy Haruna, Nelly Ating

Mental Health Awareness Week is an annual event which provides an opportunity for the whole of the UK to focus on achieving good mental health.

In 2022, Mental Health Awareness Week takes place 9-15 May on the topic of ‘Loneliness’. Loneliness is affecting more and more of us in the UK and has had a huge impact on our physical and mental health during the pandemic. Our connection to other people and our community is fundamental to protecting our mental health and we need to find better ways of tackling the epidemic of loneliness. We can all play a part in this and at Ffotogallery we are inviting you to join us for four days of activities and talks with a focus on mental wellbeing and loneliness.

Each evening between Wednesday 11th - Friday 13th, we will be holding artists’ talks. Our photographers will share and discuss work which all has a focus on mental health and well being. We will look in depth at how they use their imagery to depict mental health struggles, the issues and influencing factors which can affect our health and well being and to share their own stories.

Booking for our artists’ talks is advisable. Here is a line up of the week’s events:

Wednesday 11th May, 6-8pm - In Conversation with Suzie Larke, plus screening of the short film Unseen

Thursday 12th May, 6-8pm - In Conversation with Jo Haycock and family
As we will have vulnerable guests with us, we kindly ask visitors to wear a mask where possible during this event.

Friday 13th May, 6-8pm - In Conversation with Iko-Ojo Mercy Haruna and Nelly Ating, hosted by Cynthia Sitei (Online event)

On Saturday 14th May we will be holding a whole day of activities with a focus on improving our well being and to tackle loneliness. We will have arts & crafts, relaxing and fun activities throughout the afternoon. More details to follow.

About Artists

Portrait of Suzie Larke

Suzie Larke

Suzie Larke is a visual artist and photographer based in Cardiff, Wales, UK. Graduating with a degree in photography in 2002, she has since worked internationally as a commercial and portrait photographer.

Her fine art photography explores themes of identity, emotion, and mental health. Suzie is interested in representing an internal state rather than capturing a moment in time. She creates images that challenge our notion of reality – combining photographs to create an image that defies logic.

Portrait of Jo Haycock

Jo Haycock

Jo Haycock is a documentary and environmental portrait photographer from Monmouthshire, South Wales, focusing on the connections and relationships people have between each other and the spaces and objects they live within.

Her love of photography began as a child, when she used to sit in the corner of the family bathroom-turned-darkroom, watching her father create prints from the situations he captured on the streets of Hong Kong, where she grew up. Jo now spends time with families and communities recording their stories. She believes in connecting with the people she photographs, going on a journey with them to genuinely feel and see a part of their lives.

Jo’s photographic practice also includes longer-term social and personal photographic projects. She spent a year with a local Women's Aid group, creating a body of work showing the empowerment and hope of the women and children who had previously suffered in their lives through domestic abuse, and were in the process of re-building their lives. She also collaborates with other artists to help tell community stories, bringing together a range of disciplines, from theatre performance, to mosaic and documentary photography. Her current long-term personal project is Discarded With Honour, which explores the relationships and talks about the objects we have in our lives, but that no longer serve us.

Website | Instagram

Portrait of Iko-Ono Mercy Haruna

Iko-Ono Mercy Haruna

Iko-Ọjọ Mercy Haruna, known as Mercy, is a visual artist and documentary photographer dedicated to capturing the fleeting moments of family life and stories that dive deeper into the realities and complexities of motherhood. Her latest project, Offspring aims to create space for Black mothers in the UK to share their stories related to the physical and psychological changes that come with the transition into motherhood.

Alongside her photographic practice, she’s a parenting writer and podcaster and has worked on a number of projects including co-hosting BBC World Service’s Parentland - an evidence-based podcast that investigates parenting questions through the lens of scientific research and global cultural practices.

Mercy was born and raised in Nigeria, spent her teens in France and moved to the UK to pursue a BA in Visual Communication and MA in Photography. She currently lives in Kent with her family.

Portrait of Nelly Ating

Nelly Ating

Nelly Ating is a photojournalist who focuses on questions of identity, education, extremism, and migration. As a photojournalist, her work has been published in local dailies in Nigeria and legacy media such as the BBC and CNN. Her photographic work documenting the rise of Boko Haram terrorism between 2014 and 2020 in Northeast Nigeria shone a light on the aftermath of violent extremism. Ating has exhibited at galleries and photographic festivals in Africa, Europe and the US, as well as judged and reviewed photography competitions such as African Women in Media (AWiM) and Ugandan Press Photo Awards. She is a member of Women Photograph, Black Women Photographers, African Women in Photography, the Journal Collective, and African Database for Photojournalists run by the World Press Photo. She is currently a PhD candidate at Cardiff University researching the discourse of human rights through photography.