Moorfields opens its doors for First Thursday

Moorfields Eye Hospital NHS Foundation Trust is the first hospital to join Time Out’s First Thursdays East London gallery openings – the monthly East London art event.

Moorfields in City Road will open its doors on the evening of 4 February between 6-8pm for a new exhibition by London based artist Neoh. 

Neoh, who works as an art therapist for the Outsider Gallery London, trained at the Birmingham Institute of Art and Design. His first solo exhibition, Vandal Therapy, is a visual exploration of his states of mind through a series of expressively painted and vibrant self-portraits.

The exhibition, organised by the Moorfields Arts Committee, will be one of a series of three exhibitions this year at Moorfields which all aim to highlight that many people who are visually impaired still appreciate and are themselves active within the visual arts.

The hospital is also home to the BlindArt collection – a collection of “touch” artworks designed specifically for the blind or visually impaired. Dr Mariya Moosajee, Chair of the Arts Committee at Moorfields, commented: 

“I am delighted that Moorfields is the first ever hospital to participate in First Thursdays. The Arts Committee is on a mission to demonstrate that art should be accessible to everyone. We are delighted that Neoh has chosen to showcase his work outside of a gallery and within the hospital space.The fact that Neoh’s work is both visually appealing, and at the same time deals with difficult topics like mental health: it adds another dimension to it when set in a space like Moorfields. Losing one’s sight can be devastating, both mentally and physically. But people rarely talk about the emotional impact of sight loss.”

Artist Neoh remarked: "I’m really excited that my first solo show will be at Moorfields. It’s rare that the output of therapy is exhibited, but I believe that the arts can significantly contribute to peoples’ wellbeing, mental health and recovery."

“People often seem to associate my work with Art Brut because of the raw energy and bold colours and lines. That also makes it easier for people who are visually impaired to appreciate too, so it was always more attractive to me to have my first solo show in a hospital space where it’s accessible to everyone.” 

The exhibition will be held in the pharmacy/optometry corridor at Moorfields main hospital, City Road. Visitors should follow the green line from exit 4 at Old Street station and come in through the main entrance to Moorfields Eye Hospital on the corner with Cayton Street, which is fully wheelchair accessible. Volunteers will be on hand between 6-8pm to guide people to the exhibition. 

Notes to editors

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For more information about how to get to Moorfields Eye Hospital and disabled parking visit:

  • BlindArt is a charitable organisation based in the UK whose aim is to encourage participation and interaction of the visually impaired in the sighted domain of the visual arts. BlindArt donated their entire permanent collection to Moorfields Eye Hospital in 2012. This forms a key feature of Moorfields Eye Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, promoting the positive benefits of art in the healthcare environment. This collection is entirely tactile and ensures that the visually impaired and blind can enjoy exceptional artwork. 
  • Moorfields is one of the world’s leading eye hospitals, providing expertise in clinical care, research and education. We have provided excellence in eye care for more than 200 years and we continue to be at the forefront of new breakthroughs and developments.  We are an integral part of one of the UK’s first academic health science centres, UCL Partners, and also one of the new academic health science networks. We were one of the first NHS organisations to achieve foundation trust status in 2004.  
  • We treat the entire range of eye diseases, from common complaints to rare conditions which require treatments not available anywhere else in the UK. We dealt with more than 600,000 patient attendances in 2014/15 across our 22 locations in and around London, enabling us to provide expert care closer to patients’ homes. 
  • Our specialist A&E dealt with more than 95,000 patient visits in the year 2014/15.
  • With our academic partners at the UCL Institute of Ophthalmology, Moorfields is recognised as a leading centre of excellence in eye and vision research. Together, we form one of the largest ophthalmic research sites in the world, with the largest patient population in Europe  or the USA. We publish more scientific papers than any other eye  and vision research site, and have an extensive joint research portfolio.

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