Holloway performance artist shortlisted for prestigious book award

PUBLISHED: 10:12 18 July 2011 | UPDATED: 16:37 20 July 2011

Bobby Baker (right) with daughter Dora Whittuck, a clinicial psychologist who also worked on the book. Picture: Maisie Broadhead and Jack Cole

Bobby Baker (right) with daughter Dora Whittuck, a clinicial psychologist who also worked on the book. Picture: Maisie Broadhead and Jack Cole


A performer from Holloway who spent more than a decade compiling works portraying life with mental-illness has been recognised by a major charity.

Bobby Baker, 60, who lives in Georges Road, Holloway, has written the book Diary Drawings: Mental Illness and Me, which has been shortlisted for Mind’s Book of the Year Award 2011.

The book comprises of 158 drawings detailing her difficult journey to recovery after she was diagnosed with a borderline personality disorder in 1996.

Mrs Baker, who is a prominent UK performance artist, expressed her happiness at the nomination.

She said: “I’m delighted. It’s probably the most significant thing that has happened to me, I’ve not been so pleased about anything”

The coveted charity award, now in its 30th year, was set up to celebrate works that increase understanding of mental health problems amongst the general public.

However Mrs Baker who spent time at the Drayton Park Women’s Crisis Centre in Islington was keen to stress the stigmatism that is still attached to mental illness.

She said: “The problem is that there is an assumption that once diagnosed you cannot get better and that is simply not true.”

“It is also something that is incredibly common as well, the fact that one in four people will experience mental illness at some point just goes to show how normal it is today.”

The winner of the competition will be announced at the end of July. Mrs Baker will tour the UK this summer with her new show Mad Gyms and Kitchens which comes to London in October.


Latest Islington News Stories

A housing association has been lambasted for its “appalling” approach to repair and maintenance work on a Clerkenwell estate.


Jamie Brown of Archant Local Impact explains how you can build brand awareness.


Volunteers from a Finsbury Park charity that uses surplus food to cook for people in need have scoooped an award for their “outstanding” meals.

A multi-billion-pound gas company has bowed to opposition and abandoned plans to partially astroturf the historic Canonbury Square Gardens.

Yesterday, 17:16

Bookworms could get their names in works by high-profile authors such as Margaret Atwood and Lee Child and raise money for a Holloway torture charity at the same time.

Yesterday, 16:02

Two new police constables will be deployed to Highbury West next month to help tackle drug-related problems across the ward, the Gazette can reveal.

Yesterday, 12:38

A walk through history will raise cash for the mayor of Islington’s chosen charities on Sunday.

Yesterday, 11:47

The community celebrated “sustainability” and British apples in Gillespie Park on Sunday.


Fostering older teenagers means giving them the skills for life as an adult. Here, a supportive lodgings carer with Islington Council and young adult who has left care share their stories

Newsletter Sign Up

Islington Gazette twice-weekly newsletter
Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Our Privacy Policy

Most read

Show Job Lists

Digital Edition


Enjoy the
Islington Gazette
e-edition today


Education and Training


Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now