This November and December, the Scottish Mental Heath Arts Festival presents Healing, a series of three short film events that explore healing through diverse voices and life experiences. The events take place in two Glasgow venues – marking SMHAF’s return to live screenings – and online.

It is almost two years since the world turned upside down and we have a unique opportunity to reflect on how we can make space for healing in uncertain times. These screenings open up a series of conversations around healing, with a focus on the experiences of diverse communities around the world. The films explore healing as an individual and collective process, as well as a discourse that allows us to reimagine the world we live in.

This programme has been curated by Theo Panagopoulos as part of Film Hub Scotland’s New Promoters Scheme, which aims to increase the number of marginalised people programming films for cinemas, festivals and venues within Scotland. They address mental health in a calm, reflective, and explorative manner, creating relaxed, accessible and trigger-sensitive experiences for audiences with lived experience of mental ill health.

Theo said:

“Everyone has a different and very personal definition of what healing is: it is a space, a relationship, an identity, a spiritual process. This programme connects healing and mental health with everything that surrounds us, it re-evaluates the ways it is conceived and how it is connected to systemic and structural aspects of the world. I hope the screenings provide a sensitive and safe space where a discourse on the complexity of individual and collective healing can emerge.”

Tickets for all screenings are Pay What You Can, from FREE to £8. The online conversation Healing: Reflections of the Self, in partnership with the Scottish Documentary Institute, is FREE.

Screenings and Booking Information

Belonging in the In-Between

Sat 27 Nov, 7-8.30pm, The Deep End (Govanhill Baths Community Trust), Glasgow, Book Tickets

These films explore a very simple question: how can you feel whole if your own identity is fragmented? And is it necessary to feel whole in order to heal? Contrasting five distinct experiences of cultural fragmentation, these stories from diverse contexts explore themes of migration, assimilation, othering, and reclamation, exploring how people can find space for healing as they belong in the in-between. The screening will be followed by an informal conversation over food made especially for this screening by Milk Cafe (included with all tickets).

Reflections of the Self

Watch Films: INDY On Demand, Mon 29 Nov-Fri 3 Dec
Conversation: Zoom, Thu 2 Dec, 2-3pm

Presented in partnership with the Scottish Documentary Institute (SDI), this event explores healing in the context of documentary filmmaking. Directed by Scotland-based filmmakers with support from SDI, these five films explore mental health through the prism of lived experiences and past narratives. The conversation will explore how the making and sharing of films – treading a fine balance between visibility and vulnerability – can create space for healing, from the perspective of filmmakers, subjects, and audiences.

Reimagining the Future

Tue 7 Dec, 7-8.30pm, CCA, Glasgow, Book Tickets

What could the world look like if it was run by people and communities who have always been marginalised? What if oppressive structures and systems could be replaced by new spaces of healing? This programme envisions new worlds through the work of five diverse filmmakers from across the world, conjuring dreams of a sensitive and fluid society where social, political, and even physical rules no longer apply.

Supported by Film Hub Scotland, part of the BFI’s Film Audience Network, and funded by Screen Scotland and Lottery funding from the BFI.

Banner Image: I don’t feel at home anywhere anymore, dir. Viv Li