HUB-Robeson Galleries hosts 'Anxiety Project' exhibit, events through March 14

January 20, 2021

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — The HUB-Robeson Galleries presents "The Anxiety Project," works by William Doan, professor of theatre at Penn State, on view daily from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., in HUB Gallery and online through March 14.

Drawing, performing, and sharing have helped Doan – and others – cope, he said. Therapeutic and alleviating symptoms, drawing, performing, and storytelling have helped Doan to imagine his mental health, rather than to be defined by mental illness. "The Anxiety Project" invites others to draw for their mental health.

In addition, Doan will speak about the project during the free NoonTimeU webinar series, "The Anxiety Project: An Artist’s Look at Mental Health and Wellness," which will air from noon to 1 p.m. on Jan. 28. Register here for NoonTimeU.

While a pandemic, nationwide protest and uprising, a presidential election and cascading challenges face individuals and communities across the globe, many of us have struggled with our mental health. Despite the prevalence and normalcy of these feelings and experiences, stigma continues to follow mental illness, according to Doan.

“I’m excited, and a bit nervous, to see how the drawings speak to people in a gallery setting,” said Doan. “I’ve really only shared them in performance and via my Instagram site. I never really thought of them as exhibition material. For me, drawing every day, whether it’s with or without a specific goal, is critical to staying focused on my mental health. For others, our students in particular, maybe it’s cooking, playing an instrument, dancing, making something with their hands — anything creative can be liberating and help you take care of yourself.”

Doan is a professor of theatre in the College of Arts and Architecture and director of the Arts and Design Research Incubator (ADRI) at Penn State. He served as the Penn State Laureate for 2019-20 and has also served as artist-in-residence for the College of Nursing.

"Anything creative can be liberating and help you take care of yourself."

— William Doan, professor of theatre, Penn State

The Anxiety Project grew out of Doan’s work at the ADRI, prior to becoming director. HUB-Robeson Galleries and the ADRI will co-sponsor several events affiliated with The Anxiety Project exhibition throughout spring semester, including a performance and several workshops.

“We’ve been working with Student Affairs Health Promotion and Wellness to explore how we, as an arts-based research group focused on health and well-being, may contribute to student health and wellness,” said Tara Caimi, ADRI manager. “This semester, in addition to the events associated with 'The Anxiety Project' exhibition, we are looking at bringing in a speaker for Eating Disorder Awareness Week, sponsored by Health Promotion and Wellness, and offering related workshops around the topic. The arts have such a great capacity to foster health and well-being in so many ways. That’s what we investigate and support at the ADRI.”

Gallery visitors are required to wear a mask at all times, and practice proper social distancing. Gallery capacity will be limited to a maximum of five guests at a time. HUB Gallery is open from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. daily and admission is free.

For more information on this and other exhibitions, contact HUB-Robeson Galleries at 814-865-2563, or visit the website. Keep up to date with HUB-Robeson Galleries by signing up for the Listserv or following the galleries on Instagram @hubrobesongalleries.

Last Updated January 20, 2021