MACtivate Art Packs

We've partnered with local charitable and community organisations to promote creativity as a vital tool for mental wellbeing and developing new skills.

As part of our new ‘MACtivate’ programme, the MAC has distributed hundreds of art packs to our five associate partners to encourage users to try art and design as a way to express themselves and take care of their mental health during this phase of the Government lockdown. Artwork created through this project will be displayed alongside that of professional artists as part of a special exhibition ‘In a Rainbow of Coalitions’ in the MAC’s Tall Gallery opening soon.

Gillian Carr, Service Manager at Action Mental Health explained why they got involved in the project and how it helped to support participants. She said:

“Using the arts is an effective and enjoyable way to relax, show your creative side and to learn new skills. That’s exactly why the MAC’s rainbow project was the perfect fit for many of our clients, providing them with another very positive way to support their recovery from mental ill-health.

“Taking part also encourages interaction with others and helps improve communication and social skills, which can be really useful when looking for future employment or volunteering opportunities. Many of our clients will be able to use these skills to help with prospective job searches and as valuable techniques for dealing with life’s challenges.”

Jen White, Creative Programmes Manager at the MAC added:

“We want everyone to be able to access and participate in the arts and the MAC’s Art At Home activity packs, made with the Play Resource centre and artist Miguel Martin, equip people with the materials they need to get creative and release their inner artist at home.

People from all over Belfast and NI put pen, pencil and paint to paper to create their own rainbows as a message of collective solidarity with frontline and key workers who have risked so much during this pandemic. We look forward to providing a home for these very special works of art in our award-winning galleries.”

The MAC’s associate partners are Action Mental Health, Alliance for Choice, Extern, Participation and Practice of Rights and The Rainbow Project.

‘In a Rainbow of Coalitions’ once open will run until 24th January 2021, coinciding with exhibitions by artists Peter Liversidge and Frederic Huska in our Upper and Sunken galleries.