CMG Art ExhibitionAn artist from south Wales living with mental health needs has been supported by a branch of service provider Care Management Group (CMG) to curate his own art exhibition.

Eamon Sweeney, a service user at CMG St Helen’s House in Newport, came up with the idea to give himself and others with disabilities a platform to display their work and to highlight the way art can provide a voice to people who may sometimes find it difficult to communicate verbally.

The exhibition, which was launched earlier this month at the Riverside Theatre and Arts Centre in Newport, displays an array of art from traditional landscapes to modern sculpture.

After showcasing his work to 60 CMG service users and staff from across England and Wales, Sweeney said: "The exhibition has proved hugely successful, stimulatingly entertaining and educational.

"People that came along enjoyed the diversity and although individual pieces were loosely connected, they worked as an overall collection."

Further reading: CoolTan Arts wins Innovation Award 

Guests were shown round the exhibition while some of the artists, including Sweeney, were on hand to explain how they created the pieces and what it meant to them.

Following the tour, there was a spoken word performance from Disability Arts Cymru, a group that help disabled and deaf people develop their skills in the arts and who are exhibiting alongside CMG.

Michael Fullerton, director of quality and clinical care at CMG, added: "The evening, and the whole exhibition, has been a huge success. People came from all over England and Wales to see the work, which was incredibly powerful.

"I think it’s inspired others to put on exhibitions celebrating disability art in different parts of the country. There’s now talk of putting one on in Brighton and we’re looking forward to supporting the project."