The Art of Dying, an exhibition of art work by people who have recently died or their friends and family, will be shown at Whitworth Art Gallery on 11 May as part of the Dying Matters National Week between 8-14 May.
The Greater Manchester and Eastern Cheshire Strategic Clinical Network (GMEC SCN) are hosting the event alongside the 13 Clinical Commissioning Groups they have worked in collaboration with.. It will seek to raise awareness of death, dying and bereavement.
Health and Social Care organisations have been invited to submit pieces of art work with the theme ‘Dying Matters’ they will include many mediums; painting, drawing, ceramic, photography/ digital image etc. All submissions will appear in a virtual gallery.
The public have been viewing and voting for the piece of work that means the most with them and the 10 pieces with the most votes will go on display at the gallery on 11 May.
The exhibition will sit alongside a free one-day showcase event that will offer a day of information, workshops, performances, art, ideas and conversation about dying, death and bereavement. Tickets to the workshop are free but booking is essential.
Tony Bonser, North West Champion of the Dying Matters Alliance said:
“As a nation we have a great reluctance to talk about death and dying, though it is actually for all of us inevitable. Sadly, many people do not achieve the end to their lives they would have wished for, often because they don’t find the occasion or circumstance to talk about it or record it. This can be a source of both regret and pain to them and even more so to those who care for and about them.
“We think it is natural and healthy to talk about death and dying, to celebrate those close to us who have died, and to honour them through a wide range of media. We hope people will come to the Whitworth Art Gallery to share our celebration and feel the value of an open conversation about an important subject.”
Research for Dying Matters has found that many people have specific wishes about their end of life care or what they would like to happen to them after their death, but a reluctance to discuss these issues makes it much less likely that these will be met. There is a major mismatch between people’s preferences for where they would like to die and their actual place of death: 70% of people would prefer to die at home but around half currently die in hospital.
In 2009 the National Council for Palliative care (NCPC) set up Dying Matters coalition to promote public awareness of dying, death and bereavement. The coalition’s mission is to help people talk more openly about dying, death and bereavement, and to make plans for the end of life. Talking about dying makes it more likely that that you, or your loved one, will die as you might have wished and it will make it easier for your loved ones if they know you have had a ‘good death’. For more information on Dying Matters Awareness week please go to: http://www.dyingmatters.org
This news story was also covered by the Manchester Evening News