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Who are we?

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Founder & Chief Executive

Katherine has always been passionate about the arts and the positive impact they can have on a person's self esteem, communication and self expression.  In 2011 she was awarded a teacher's grant from The Goldsmith's Company to research Intergenerational Theatre and the Arts in America. While their she spent time with inspiring organisations such as Elders Share the Arts and Alzheimer's Poetry Project and realised how much of a transformative impact the arts can have on health. She was also able to explore Expressive Arts for Health work in Hong Kong at the IEATA conference and witnessed the wonderful work happening globally. This inspired her to explore and work towards creating arts for health opportunities in the UK and North East and she set up Banyan Arts CIC  in 2017. 

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Director &

Documentary Photographer

Damien Wootten is a documentary and art photographer living in Gateshead. He has worked on a wide range of photographic projects and commissions and has exhibited work both regionally and nationally for 30 years. Most recently he exhibited 'The Radical Road' project at Woodhorn Museum in Northumberland. In March this year he will be exhibiting ‘Close The Door On Past Dreariness’, at Newcastle Arts Centre, which documents the current homeless crisis.
Damien has worked with a range of community groups developing photographic based projects - including pin-hole photography, studio portraiture and using mobile phones to record the environment around us. The group work has an emphasis on learning, enjoyment, creativity, confidence building and well-being. Most recently he has worked with Banyan Arts and stroke survivors to create a series of ‘self-portraits’, exploring ideas around celebrating identity and individuality.

Who we work with?


We currently work with a wide range of communities including Stroke Survivors, people who are living with and effected by brain trauma their families and carers. We also work with people living with mental health issues, intergenerational and BAME groups and people living with dementia using Reminiscence Arts work.

Freelancers and Key Partners 

We work with a number of partners across the region to deliver an innovative approach to health and well being using expressive arts and the creative journey to support bringing people together to improve the health and well being of individuals as well as contributing to the wider benefits of the communities we work in.
We have successfully partnered with the Stroke Association and Stroke North East, Sunderland Hospital Stroke Unit, Gateshead Clubhouse , Living History North East, the Bangladeshi Centre Sunderland, Cygnet Healthcare and  Side by Side Arts 


Freelance Media and

Marketing Support 

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