In thinking about some Mad future I thought about the ways groups form and acquire names and identities.

When the Fens (near where I grew up) were drained in the 16th Century, a group of locals called ‘The Fen Tigers’ resisted, sabotaging the machinery that was threatening their way of life.

The Mountain Goats, a band fronted by John Darnielle, have been a constant soundtrack. ‘The Mad Wolves’ was inspired by their song ‘Up the Wolves’:

I’m going to bribe the officials
I’m going to kill all the judges
It’s going to take you people years to recover from all of the damage

I sometimes feel I want to resist time ‘healing’ things. I want things to always hurt as much as they did in the moment, so that things don’t become softened, reconciled to, forgotten.

Download and print your own

An Archive of Propaganda from a Mad People’s Uprising

This artwork is part of Lilith (Lea) Cooper’s imagined fictional archive of downloadable posters from The Mad People’s Uprising of 2033, commissioned for SMHAF 2023.

It asks what a Mad revolution might look like, creating a space to imagine beyond the present day, and locating today’s Mad, survivor and mental health activism in a longer genealogy.