Leeds School of Arts

Anxiety Arcade

Created by a member of Leeds School of Arts staff member and alumnus, Anxiety Arcade is a full-sized arcade machine exploring themes of anxiety and isolation which will be free for people to play at Leeds Trinity Kitchen, 24 – 30 May from 12 – 7pm.

Hands operating buttons and joystick on a retro arcade machine

Looking at anxiety through the lens of those that experience it, Anxiety Arcade uses iconic retro gameplay to get people talking about mental health, rather than trying to solve it. A love letter to 80s pop culture and classic video games, Anxiety Arcade aims to both highlight the issues of anxiety whilst allowing you to reset and take a break from everything in your world.

The project has been created by Leeds-based Closed Forum who are a collective of artists that specialise in digital interactive experiences and are led by Leeds School of Arts Learning Support Officer & MA student Adam Sam Sas-Skowronski and Leeds School of Arts alumnus Matt Allen.

Young woman using 'anxiety arcade' machine with images on screen and text reading 'Who am I again?'

(c) Lizzie Coombes

Director of Arts Dr Oliver Bray commented on the project, saying "Anxiety Arcade looks to be a really clever and important piece of work and I encourage people to go and play the machine at Trinity Kitchen and start talking more openly about mental health."

"Closed Forum, which comprises of both existing staff and our brilliant alumni, is a testament to the great creative power of our Leeds Beckett community in the city."

The installation is running at Leeds Trinity Kitchen from 24 - 30 May, 12 - 7pm, and is one of six projects that are comprising Leeds' Compass Festival 2021

Arcade machine in the middle of pedestrian crowd on Briggate, Leeds

(c) Lizzie Coombes

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