Empowering Artists Wellbeing

In 2023 we successfully completed the pilot for ReViVe, an intergenerational artist wellbeing and networking space for black creatives exploring identity and/or wellbeing in their work. 

Over the course of the pilot, with our first cohort of a dozen creatives, we created a safe space to share stories and creative journeys across generations. A space to take time out, to replenish and gather tools that integrate wellness at the core of one’s practice. ReViVe contributes to the building of an inclusive, fit-for-future cultural sector. Where participants build resilience, feel passionately engaged, and empowered to deepen their artistic excellence.

"Community is so important,
healing and necessary"

  • Tackle inequity in the arts 
  • Enhance participants’ wellbeing 
  • Hone self-agency to build sustainable careers 
  • Support the building of an INCLUSIVE fit for future, cultural sector
  • Deliver an intergenerational wellbeing & networking workshop series for black creatives 
  • Support the development of peer led workshops that create a sustainable Wellbeing Hub for black creatives 
  • Collaborative partnership working that acts collectively on equity, inclusion and social justice within the arts sector

Across 8 weekly sessions we explored issues including work/life balance; self-care; stress management; financial health and culture as a source for inspirational wellbeing. QuestLife, alongside some guest facilitators, worked with arts and wellbeing tools including; creative writing; art making; mindfulness; exercise, improvisation and movement. ReViVe is as much about the experience than any defined end goal.

Topics we covered included:

  • Black Arts & Cultural Practices & the shoulders we stand on
  • Recognising your stress triggers
  • What does Artist Wellbeing mean?
  • Managing a good work/life balance
  • Financial wellbeing

Each of our ReViVe workshops ended with a presentation by a creative assessor. They were artists who observed the session and at the end gave a live response to what they saw and heard. Across the 8 weeks we had improvised music, painting and drawing, poetry, movement and image theatre. Each creative assessor was a black creative who, through their presence and participation served to reflect the group and model ways in which art can be used to transform and communicate conversations and experiences. Gratitude and thanks to our creative assessors Aama Sade, Chiedza Rwodzi, Wumi Olaosebikan, Jordan Adaji and Xvngo.

Christine is an Afro-Caribbean woman in her 50s. A former family lawyer, she currently works in HR for the Civil Service. Passionate about the fight for women’s equality, voice and wellbeing, she actively explores this through a Black Women’s Wellness Podcast she has created and hosts. 

Through meeting older black creatives in pursuit of their dreams at ReViVe, Christine hoped to gain confidence and reawaken her love for writing and art, something she hasn’t pursued since school.  

“I didn’t see myself as a creative. My mentor Eljai encouraged me to sign up and said, “Yes you are being creative by doing the podcast.” 

I have the tendency to make assumptions about what I do and how it will be received. So, I saw the podcast as an extension of my previous campaigning work rather than a creative project.

ReViVe felt like a safe space to express how you were doing. You could say how you felt, cry, be silent, listen and soak up wisdom. You could feel better about wherever you were in yourself that week. This was the first time I’ve had a space that I could go to that was just for me. 

At the start of the process I made my first podcast show and at 8 weeks I made my 2nd. The experience opened my eyes to what is creativity and what is a creative. I now consider myself to be a creative and the work I do around the podcast to be part of the creative process – it’s given me that level of confidence.

Download our short report on the ReViVe programme and outcomes HERE

ReViVE was made possible through the support of our partners Artistic Directors of the Future (ADF) & Theatre Deli. ReViVe received seed funding from ADF as part of their Innovators Programme. ADF’s mission is to increase the number of Global Majority arts professionals in leadership positions. Theatre Deli’s investment allowed us to pilot this programme.

2 minute wonder

Our 2 minute wonders were an opportunity for a workshop participant to lead a short exercise, game or energiser with the group. It was a chance for someone to take a first stepping stone towards facilitation or, if already experienced, share a favourite tool or try out a new idea.

“It’s so rare and powerful to be in a circle of black creatives. This circle has become a vital part of my self care kit”