Refocusing The Lens – The ever-judging eye

PHOTOVOICE is an engagement and empowerment strategy that uses photography as a tool for social change. It gives any group the opportunity to record, reflect on, and critique personal and community issues in a creative way.

The aim of this project is to motivate participants to be actively involved in decisions that affect their own lives, while decreasing stigma and broadening understanding of their personal struggles. The resulting exhibit, REFOCUSING THE LENS, features the work of five participants who have documented their personal experiences with mental health, eager to represent them to the outside world.

The ever-judging eye, By Aidan

Artist’s Statement

When I attended the day hospital program at St. Joseph’s Hospital I would usually walk home through the High Park Zoo. I have always been extremely curious by the emu; they are a majestic flightless bird that also seems to have a lot of anger inside them. Their piercing orange eyes are what strike me the most. These menacing eyes represent how society tends to view those struggling with their mental wellness. Always judging, staring intently, with a passive aggressive attitude. Mental illness strikes many different types of people and these individuals would be better served by a society that treats them with respect, understanding, and empathy. The ever-judging eye needs to be shut.

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