openPR Logo
Press release

Dementia from an art and design perspective

07-25-2016 02:55 PM CET | Science & Education

Press release from: FWF - Austrian Science Fund

/ PR Agency: PR&D
Demographic change requires a new approach to dementia. A project supported by the Austrian Science Fund FWF creates awareness of the issue using innovative artistic methods that sharpen the perception and sensitivity of people unaffected by the ailment.

Dementia patients often suffer from social stigma. Everyday errands such as shopping, financial transactions or going to the theatre may be difficult for them, so they withdraw from society in order to avoid rejection and embarrassment. "D.A.S. Dementia. Arts. Society." is the title of an FWF-funded project in which the Viennese artist and researcher Ruth Mateus-Berr and her team are investigating ways to avoid this tendency and to change society's attitude to dementia for the better. In the coming three years, the project team will tackle the issues of an ageing society by focusing on new realities and creating awareness of what it means to be living with dementia. "Where social policy, nursing and medicine are at the end of their tether, strategies involving art and design may make people with dementia see their own skills and their situation in a new way. This is a completely novel approach", explains principal investigator Mateus-Berr.

Artistic interventions
For non-sufferers it is hard to understand what it means slowly to lose one's mental faculties and, consequently, one's bearings in the world. For sufferers it is a state mostly marked by anxiety and confusion. – These are the feelings that Mateus-Berr intends to investigate with her interdisciplinary research team in this arts-cum-science project. In co-operation with different target groups they have developed artistic initiatives that enable the participants to approach the topic from an emotional angle. The team of Mateus-Berr from the Vienna University of Applied Arts works with children and young people, with adults at adult education institutions, with artists and with sufferers and their caregivers. The participants then discuss and reflect on their experience with experts.

Changing perspectives
The first requirement is awareness-building. "Particularly young people often have no understanding of the elderly", notes the project leader, who is a professor at the University of Applied Arts in Vienna and once a week also teaches young people at the Bertha von Suttner School which is located on a ship anchored on the River Danube. "This is why we want to explain to young people and to society what it feels like when your own senses betray you", says Mateus-Berr. The research project arose from the master project "Feel Dementia" conducted by two students of the Master's degree course "Social Design. Arts as Urban Innovation" at the Vienna University of Applied Arts: the artist Cornelia Bast and the designer Antonia Eggeling. The two women designed two interventions: an audio file that floods listeners with a wealth of information and tasks in order to create confusion and a procedure which enables participants to share the patients' situation by means of an art object called "Fokung Wirkus" (Cornelia Bast). Shaped like a giant diver's helmet, the object is placed over participants' heads, restricting their view. Different lenses providing different perspectives are the only way to see. – This triggers irritation and a feeling of helplessness and can even lead to a sense of "having a nervous breakdown", as some young people said in their feedback. The next step consists of documenting one's feelings. How does it feel to be confused? – The participants deal with this question through art, in writing or in interviews. The project team then documents and evaluates these "confusion logs". Exhibitions about the project are in the pipeline.

Designing the Society
"D.A.S. Dementia. Arts. Society." is characterised by a new approach to complex issues. Putting oneself empathetically in someone else's shoes and in different situations, observing and questioning processes are strong points of art and design. In the case at hand, these faculties are designed to trigger social processes and provide interdisciplinary approaches underpinned by a scientific basis. "Interdisciplinarity works particularly well in the arts, if you don't shrink from asking questions about other disciplines, such as medicine. We have to learn to understand others so as to permit change", emphasises Ruth Mateus-Berr. The artist specifies that the project aims at developing practice-oriented and sustainable formats, such as workshops, design and art concepts, in order to help overcome in the course of time the challenges the issue presents both to society and those affected. "I see many possibilities", she concludes.

FWF Austrian Science Fund

The Austrian Science Fund (FWF) is Austria's central funding organization for basic research.

The purpose of the FWF is to support the ongoing development of Austrian science and basic research at a high international level. In this way, the FWF makes a significant contribution to cultural development, to the advancement of our knowledge-based society, and thus to the creation of value and wealth in Austria.

Scientific Contact:
ao. Univ.-Prof. Dr. Ruth Mateus-Berr
University of Applied Arts Vienna
Oskar Kokoschka-Platz 2
1010 Vienna, Austria
T +43 / 1 / 711 33 - 2030
E ruth.mateus-berr@uni-ak.ac.at
W www.dieangewandte.at

Austrian Science Fund FWF:
Marc Seumenicht
Haus der Forschung
Sensengasse 1
1090 Vienna, Austria
T +43 / 1 / 505 67 40 - 8111
E marc.seumenicht@fwf.ac.at
W http://www.fwf.ac.at

Distribution:
PR&D – Public Relations for Research & Education
Mariannengasse 8
1090 Vienna, Austria
T +43 / 1 / 505 70 44
E contact@prd.at
W http://www.prd.at

This release was published on openPR.

Permanent link to this press release:

Copy
Please set a link in the press area of your homepage to this press release on openPR. openPR disclaims liability for any content contained in this release.

You can edit or delete your press release Dementia from an art and design perspective here

News-ID: 351428 • Views: 609

More Releases from FWF - Austrian Science Fund

Exploring "emo-eating"
While fear and aggression tend to curb our appetite, sadness and frustration seem to stimulate it. A project funded by the Austrian Science Fund FWF looks into the connections between mood and overeating in healthy and bulimic individuals. We know how it feels to look forward to our favourite dish; we are familiar with the notions of comfort food and feeling butterflies in the stomach instead of hunger. In eating
Neurosciences: a stress test for men and women
Whilst it is true that women and men respond differently to stress, current neuroscientific research only partially confirms traditional gender stereotypes. Other factors heavily contribute to the stress response such as self-esteem, hormones and stress regulation, as has been demonstrated by a project funded by the Austrian Science Fund FWF. How people react to stress is subjective. Gender also plays a fundamental role. Scientific studies have shown that the stress
Researching the grammar of sign language
Like spoken language, sign language has a complex and differentiated structure. One just has to be able to discern and interpret it. With the support of the Austrian Science Fund FWF, a research team from Klagenfurt is working on the elements of a grammar of sign language. It is language that distinguishes Homo sapiens from animals. A complex system in which smaller units combine into larger units, into sentences, into statements.
Using mathematics to hunt for computer errors
Improving the security of computer software and hardware requires mathematical analytic methods. Thanks to research by a team of computer scientists led by Krishnendu Chatterjee in a project funded by the Austrian Science Fund FWF, these methods will work significantly faster in the future. Security gap in application discovered, update urgently recommended. Alerts like that can confront us every week. Often, a comprehensive update that addresses teething troubles is already

All 5 Releases


More Releases for Austria

Austria Agriculture Market | Austria Agriculture Industry | Austria Agriculture …
The share of Austria agriculture within the Austrian economy declined steady afterward World War II, agriculture continues to represent a very important part of the economy attributable to its social and political significance. The Chamber of Agriculture rests on an equal level with the chambers of commerce and labour, though its members manufactures solely a fraction of the GDP that industrial and sale able labours produce. Though little, the agricultural sector is
Agrochemicals Market in Austria
ReportsWorldwide has announced the addition of a new report title Austria: Agrochemicals: Market Intelligence (2016-2021) to its growing collection of premium market research reports. The report “Austria: Agrochemicals: Market Intelligence (2016-2021)” provides market intelligence on the different market segments, based on type, active ingredient, formulation, crop, and pest. Market size and forecast (2016-2021) has been provided in terms of both, value (000 USD) and volume (000 KG) in the report. A
Nazi psychology in Austria
The history of academic psychology after the "Anschluss", the annexation of Austria by Germany in 1938, and its role as a discipline used in National Socialist policies is being examined systematically for the first time in a research project supported by the Austrian Science Fund FWF. "It is a sad fact”, says psychologist Gerhard Benetka from the Sigmund Freud University Vienna "that applied psychology flourished during the National Socialist era
ESCHA Bauelemente GmbH extends position in Austria
Halver, 8 August 2012 – In the course of its globalizing strategy, the German connector- and housing specialist ESCHA starts up direct sales abroad for the first time: On 1 July 2012 the company welcomed Andreas Mader as its first Field Salesman in Austria. Operating from the capital Vienna, Mr. Mader will support existing customers as well as extend the business operations. Simultaniously ESCHA will continue to market its products
Creative Austria meets creative Russia
Euroforum: communicatin ready for the next lap Vienna. On 22nd of October 2009 the advertising association Vienna invites again to the annual Euroforum: communication event, platform for European communication, guaranteeing an interesting mix of “connecting businesses and communications”. The Event takes place in Studio 44, Vienna. Focus point Russia (Moscow, St. Petersburg and Sotschi) The main goal of the Euroforum is to promote and establish business relations and synergies between
Archaeological Sensation in Austria
Scientists from the University of Vienna unearth the earliest evidence of Jewish inhabitants in Austria Archaeologists from the Institute of Prehistory and Early History of the University of Vienna have found an amulet inscribed with a Jewish prayer in a Roman child's grave dating back to the 3rd century CE at a burial ground in the Austrian town of Halbturn. The 2.2-centimeter-long gold scroll represents the earliest sign of