Photographic Treatment © consists of black and white photographic diptychs collected and edited by Laurence Aëgerter. The photographic diptychs are silkscreened with soothing or vitalising fragrances like eucalyptus, soap, caraway, orange, honeysuckle, peppermint, garden rose, clove and lavender.
Conducted in collaboration with neurologists, gerontologists and psychologists, the project aims to provide an image-based therapeutic tool to improve the well-being of senile dementia patients.
While dementia can’t be cured, the ways that we care for people with the disease can be improved, and that is what Aëgerter is seeking to do with this series. Brain stimulation is especially important for individuals suffering from the adverse effects of dementia, as it has proven to be helpful in slowing down the process of brain degeneration, according to the brain plasticity principle ‘Use It or Lose It’.
It is Aëgerter’s belief that pairing images is a powerful strategy to stimulate brain activity. The process of recognising connections between two images engages specific cognitive functions, involving associative creativity and fantasy.
Photographic Treatment © also seeks to improve the well-being of individuals with dementia through the social interaction they have with their carers in the process of looking at the photographs and making connections.
The series is an art project, but it was also a finalist for an innovation care award in the Netherlands, confirming its integration within specialised scientific criteria accepted by experts in the field of caregiving.
Website dedicated to the project : www.photographictreatment.com
Photographic Treatment © was produced thanks to the Nestlé Prize of the Grand Prix Images Vevey (Switzerland) and presented as international premiere at the Festival Images Vevey 2016. Photographic Treatment © also received the generous support of Zorgbalans; Amstelring; GGZinGeest; Stichting Art in Societies; Stichting Stokroos; Fonds Sluyterman van Loo; Stichting RCOAK; Pius-Stichting; BankGiro Loterij Fonds; Stichting VSBfonds; Huize Plantage; Stichting de Zaaier; Mondrian Fund; Fondation Beau Séjour, Vevey.
Scientific committee: Prof. Dr. Dick Swaab, Prof. Dr. Philip Scheltens, Prof. Dr. Rose-Marie Dröes, Dr. Debby Gerritsen, Dr. Frans Hoogeveen, Dr. Elsbeth de Ruijter, Dr. Anneke van der Plaats, Dr. Tom van Gestel.