Showing the faces of dementia with Alzheimer’s NICommunity
21st May 2019 to 22nd May 2019
About The Exhibition
Ahead of the Alzheimer’s Society Annual Conference 2019 (ASAC19), Belfast Exposed was commissioned by Alzheimer’s NI to work with individuals diagnosed with Alzheimer's and capture their journeys through the stages of the disease, through the use of portrait photography.
The project aimed to show that people living with dementia can still have active and fulfilling lives. In addition, our work sought to highlight the importance of individuals remaining connected with their community and continuing to engage with wider society. An Alzheimer’s diagnosis does not mean that someone can no longer contribute to their community or that they should be excluded from the wider world.
The portraits produced as part of this project reflect a wide range of circumstances. This includes individuals diagnosed with Alzheimer’s still in full-time employment, through to those now living in supervised accommodation and care homes.
Working with Alzheimer’s NI and their Northern Irish network, Belfast Exposed engaged with individuals to capture an image that represented them at their current stage of diagnosis. Individuals were encouraged to talk about their lives, their families and their interests, and to be photographed in a setting that represented this. The result is a range of sensitive and honest portraits that represent all stages of dementia.
This work was part of a wider project ahead of the Alzheimer’s Society Annual Conference in May 2019. As a result, photographs from the three different areas that the Alzheimer’s Society represents were combined and shown in a single exhibition at ASAC19. Three individual artists from each region were responsible for the work, Mervyn Smyth, Northern Ireland; Manon Ouimet, England; and Sophie Sherwood, Wales.