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If you can't say anything nice...

There is a saying which goes: 'if you can't say anything nice, don't say anything at all.' Well here goes:.............................................................................................................. um.................................................................. er.

Posted by Dolly Sen, 30 January 2015

Last modified by Colin Hambrook, 7 October 2015

Need a producer/organisation to support my mischief and madness

Happy new year everyone.

I am thinking about applying to Unlimited to realise two creative projects, but I need a producer or an organisation to help me produce it. 

One is to expand my psychotic website, which you can read about more at http://shortcircuit.org.uk/dolly-sen-the-internet-has-crashed/  You can view the prototype at http://internetbreakdown.com/ please do not go there if you are feeling detached or vulnerable. 

My second idea is a live arts project called 'Section 136', full of art, poetry, cuddly lambs and hugs. 

"They called me mad, and I called them mad, and damn them, they outvoted me". Nathaniel Lee.

The police can use section 136 of the Mental Health Act to take you to a place of safety when you are in a public place. They can do this if they think you have a mental illness and are in need of care.

A place of safety can be a hospital or a police station. The police can move you between places of safety.

This is typically used when someone is acting strangely, and the police don’t have an understandable and acceptable reason to make it a straightforward arrest. It is used if the police think that the person might be a risk to themselves or someone else.

But what constitutes public display of mental illness which can harm people  or those around them? Consumerism? No. Sexist ads making you feel inadequate? No. Compassion fatigue? No. Casual racism? No. Discrimination towards disabled people? No.

But what underlies all this is what constitutes acceptable behaviour in this society. You can have an argument on the phone and be left alone but if you have an argument with your voices, the police will take you a place of safety, which can be very unsafe. Last year there were almost 1,000 incidents of physical injury following restraint, and there have been at least 13 restraint-related deaths of people detained under the Mental Health Act since 1998. (Mind, 2013) This place of safety can take away your freedom, your choice, your dignity and sometimes your life.  

So who decides which behaviour warrants restraint? Or which art is sectionable? If I call my madness art does it give me more rights? More freedom? Is there any art that should be restrained facedown? When does art become madness or sanity? Can sanity not make sense? Be damaging? This project address what is mental disorder and what is a healthy and honest response to the world.

Sanity is full of ridiculous acceptable behaviour and strange double standards, such as seeing street art as vandalism but the proliferation of demeaning ads selling pointless things as acceptable. That being loud, aggressive whilst drunk is someone being one of the boys. But if someone is shouting due to being troubled by voices, it is reason to be more scared, even though you are more likely to be injured or killed by the former.

Sanity is an absurd, ridiculous career, I am more of a freelancer. I try not to take my work home with me. I want to bring satire to the streets and hopefully not get sectioned because of it! I am snatching glory back from sanity. It’s ours too. They call me mad, but I want to show I make perfect sense.

Is sanity an inclusive design? "The design of sanity accessible to, and usable by, as many people as reasonably possible ... without the need for special adaptation or specialised design? Is that design shaped by unthinking obedience?

Some street activities to be explored:

Sanity feedback questionnaire
Invite people to hug a mad person?
Collecting for help the normal’s charity
Bedlamb – having a mattress covered with cuddly lambs and inviting people to join me.
Performing poetry to CCTV to see it is lonely/signing to CCTV cameras to see if their paranoia is accessible.
Holding signs: shout at your child here/Are we queuing for something beautiful?
Holding a placard with my pic and saying MISSING
Adding angel wings to everything.
Providing interpretive dance for street preachers and Jehovah’s witnesses. 

If you are interested in potentially getting sectioned with me, please email me at: dollysen70@hotmail.com 

Ta x 

Posted by Dolly Sen, 7 January 2015

Last modified by Dolly Sen, 7 January 2015