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This Mental Illness Art Imagines the Sickness as Monsters

By: Vasiliki Marapas - Published: • References: io9 and visualnews
Toby Allen has created a set of illustrations entitled ‘The Real Monsters’ that addresses the issues and stigma related to mental illness via art. In his drawings, Allen imagines various mental debilitations as supernatural entities or ‘monsters.’ Allen’s aim with this project is to raise awareness about mental illness and to make it more accessible. Allen explains, “The artwork is not at all intended to make light of these conditions but instead is intended to give these intangible illnesses some substance and make them appear more beatable as physical entities.”

Allen has illustrated the Schizophrenia Monster, Anxiety Monster, Depression Monster and Borderline Personality Disorder Monster, among others. Each drawing is accompanied by a written description that tried to capture the heart of the illness. For example, the Depression Monster drawing states, “the depression monster floats around endlessly, always covering its eyes to hide itself from the outside world.”