The Blurb

Category: Uncategorised
Published: Sunday, 27 January 2019
Written by Richard J Bell

Who is Richard J Bell?


In the beginning Richard J Bell’s first poetical words found their way into the 2007 Annual Poetry Journal created by the Schizophrenia Fellowship of New South Wales Inc called Storm of Schizophrenia.

After three years of only having three poems published he discovered an organisation that dealt with social issues called, So finally, in 2010 he had five poems published online about mental health.


From there Richard’s poetical journey went from being published in an online UK based poetry journal named, Poetry Space and an art, poetry and an opinion piece called Heavily Medicated in mental health magazine called Conexoz, which is created for and by people with lived experience of mental illness and supported by UnitingCare Wesley, Port Adelaide, South Australia.


Richard was commissioned to write poetry for the public artwork project, Poetry: The Indelible Stencil a region-wide project in NSW. Instigated and coordinated by Lizz Murphy, in partnership with Southern Tablelands Arts (STARTS) and eight local governments across the Southern Tablelands and Highlands, the project was funded by NSW Regional Arts Fund called Gold Droplets which is located in Bungonia, New South Wales, Australia. In 2011 he began to perform his poetry as part of Poetry in Place, a library tour promoting Poetry: The Indelible Stencil.


The year of 2012 saw the name of Richard J Bell in the online journal Verity La and in Wollondilly Ink, an anthology of the Wollondilly Branch of the Fellowship of Australian Writers. Along with another poetry reading for ‘Library Lovers’ Day’ at Parramatta City Library.


In 2013 he was awarded a Professional Development Grant by Accessible Arts on behalf of the NSW Government through Arts NSW and Ageing, Disability and Home Care for ‘The Gospel of Schizophrenia Mentorship Project’ to develop a poetry manuscript into his first collection of poetry.


Also in 2013 Richard created Poetical Photographs. Using original photos he put his own poetry on top of images and submitted them to the ‘Hear Me See Me’ art exhibitions organised by the Benevolent Society. A series of four Poetical Photographs were featured in Campbelltown Arts Centre, Fairfield City Museum and Art Gallery and two in the NSW Parliament House on Macquarie Street, Sydney.


Richard was also accepted into The Dax Poetry Collection at The Dax Centre in Melbourne. The Dax Centre works with sensitivity, compassion and integrity in the collection of poetry that addresses mental health issues and trauma.


Richard feels it’s only the beginning of his career of the wordy persuasion.


When 2014 came about, the year saw Richard hitting the social media trail with a Facebook page named ‘Unheard Poets Society’. Richard writes about his lived experience of schizophrenia, so people with similar issues and experiences can read and relate to on an emotional level. The year also saw Richard get published with lived experienced opinion pieces on an online journal called Mindshare based in Adelaide in South Australia.

The year of 2015 saw Richard’s book come to life and The Gospel of Schizophrenia self-published over Amazon Createspace, and the book launch at Campbelltown Art Centre. Also the year saw, him performing poetry in an Arts + Disability Expo in Redfern Carriageworks organised by Accessible Arts, along with other performers. His first creative memoir named Dark Night of Inner-Fears, came into light by making it onto an online publishing journal of Mindshare. Richard’s poetical words also made in print in an anthology called Projecting Normal.

As 2016 dawned it saw Richard perform his social issue poetry on the 2150 stage at the music festival called The Plot in Parramatta Park organised by Cattleyard Productions. As well as series of poetry readings at See me, Hear me Art Exhibitions throughout South Western Sydney. He also had an poem published on a website called Don’t let the Music Stop based in New York called Tides of Sanity.

In the year of 2017 Richard’s creative memoir under the name Richard B. made it into commercial publishing world, Project Semicolon: Your story isn’t over in HarperCollins Publishing based in America. Fools’ Gold - CREATE RECIPROCAL UNDERSTANDING IN PSYCHIATRY was also and highlight where he performed poetry in The Hatchery at UTS for Outlandish Arts. That year was also when Richard’s poetical photos Recovery in Art exhibition in the NSW Parliament House-Being | Mental Health & Wellbeing Consumer Advisory Group with a piece called, Shoreline of Recovery.

It was in 2017, began to change and develop and found a website organised by The Red Room Company that accepted poetry on the topic places that were disappearing so he wrote a piece about climate change and rising sea levels in Kingdom of Tonga.

During the year of 2018, he began to change even more and realise that the negativity of fighting the hurt, pain and injustice of mental health advocacy wasn’t healthy for him, and he began to explore other parts of himself such as his culture and heritage through creating art. Through Front Up and arts and disability program organised through Ability Options, he attended professional development program for emerging artists called, Emerge 18. There he started drawing Polynesian kupesi designs and superimposing them over original photos of Tonga. He created three Photographical Glass Prints and one short animation.

Still keeping a hand in mental health advocacy, he also performed poetry at International Day with a Disability Gala at Bankstown Sports Centre for Disability Services Australia, and Nobody Left Behind at Emanuel Tsardoulias Community Library in Dulwich Hill for Outlandish Arts. Also his lived experience opinion piece Masquerade of Disclosure – was publishing Disability Arts Online in the United Kingdom.

The year of 2019, he joined a disability professional development group called, Little Orange: Artist Studios based in Campbelltown Art Centre, where he continues to explore his creativity and explores his culture and heritage through art. Through Little Orange: Art Studios he was one of the participants in the Little Orange: Love and Happiness for Art After Hours at Art Gallery of New South Wales

. That year of 2019, saw one of Richard’s Animated Poetical Short Films get published named, Thawing of Time in the online journal of Verity La. Also, another two Photographic Glass Prints with Polynesian kupesi designs were exhibited in Darkest before Dawn at Woolloomooloo in Artspace through Front Up and the five Photographic Glass Prints that where created made it into Fishers Ghost Art Prize Finalist at Campbelltown Arts Centre.

Richard continues to explores his own cultural connections and lived experience of health concerns through art, drawings and words with creativity, and makes artistic creations in the contemporary field.

Edges of Society - Poetical Photo

Category: Uncategorised
Published: Wednesday, 07 November 2018
Written by Richard J Bell