A new exhibition has been opened in Bath to celebrate the ten-year anniversary of the University of Bath’s Centre for Pain Research.
The exhibition, titled ‘Ouch! An exploration of pain science and art’, is being hosted at the 44AD artspace and runs until 10th October. It includes a number of artworks inspired by research from the centre.
The exhibition, which has been funded by the University’s Public Engagement Unit, is also accessible online.
According to the British Pain Society, up to 28 million adults in the UK are living with chronic pain – lasting for three months or longer.
Typically, forms of chronic pain might include arthritis, severe back pain, but also conditions such as fibromyalgia or acute migraines.
Researchers at the University of Bath are studying pain from different angles to find new ways to help those affected.
Their research themes include the cognitive processes in pain, social factors including sex and gender differences, pain experienced in childhood, and digital technologies for better pain diagnosis and treatments.
Through the new exhibition, the researchers have teamed up with artists to explore the nature of pain and how it might be represented through art.
By showcasing their work in this way, they want to start a conversation with visitors about pain and the impact it has on people.
Co-Director of the Centre for Pain Research, Professor Ed Keogh who has been instrumental in putting on Ouch! explained: “Pain is a personal and subjective experience, and finding ways to represent, express and communicate it can be a challenge.
“This exhibition is an excellent opportunity to get people thinking about pain, what it is and how it affects us, and in a way that is both visually engaging and thought-provoking.”
Katie O’Brien from 44AD added: “Art and science are both driven by curiosity and discovery and it has been an invaluable experience collaborating with Professor Ed Keogh and the Centre for Pain Research.
“The result being ‘Ouch!’, a showcase of artworks by 20 artists, visually interpreting the nature of pain, and the impact it can have on our lives.
“We hope that this exhibition will present individual stories in an engaging and accessible way, whilst collectively highlighting the work undertaken at the Centre for Pain Research.”
Dr Helen Featherstone, Head of the Public Engagement Unit at the University, said: “We are delighted to see this fascinating exhibition open. Artists and our researchers always get a lot from collaborations like this.
“It’s an opportunity to learn from each other about new ways of exploring complex topics such as pain.”
You can find out more about ‘Ouch! An exploration of pain science and art’ here.