2022 PCM Art & Health – development project

This was an opportunity targeted at Soundskills participants on a mental health journey.

Nobody in the group was South Asian so everyone had pretty well ‘never heard of Mela’. Banu Adams a visual artist from Blackburn was able to give them an in-depth understanding of Mela and what it was culturally about. During her description of Mela she was also able to explain to them how Mela triggered each of the 5 human senses.

The sessions were very relaxed and informal and the participants were encouraged to work on each of the different pieces so that they didn’t become too precious and intense around a single artwork.

From a practical point of view they created 5 x A1 artworks using techniques influenced by traditional crafts like Rangoli and more contemporary colour transfer techniques. Each panel was based around a single sense and depending on that sense – included materials such as sequins, rice, paint, fabric, bells, paper etc.

Outside of this work one of the group and 2 others from the estate helped design and decorate a tricycle into a rickshaw – they used recycled materials to create a canopy over the back seat and created flowers out of old fabric. 

All of these artworks were then displayed on 5 easels at the Mela.

It was great working as a team, Laura, Nicola, Linda, myself and Banu did really well together. Banu was the teacher and we all listened and did as she said but also had our own input.


A lovely chilled out time while doing something creative & fun. Then to see others commenting about how great they looked after we had made them. Gave me a boost.


Below are images of the panels and the panels in action at the Mela.