Mental Health: Mind Matters

It's time to talk about mental illness

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Mental Health: Mind Matters uses immersive experiences and multimedia activities to provide a respectful, informative, engaging place where substantive learning, conversations, and social interactions can occur surrounding the topic of mental health.

In this tri-lingual English, Spanish, and French exhibition, you can explore how mental illness has been treated in the past, put yourselves in the shoes of people living with mental illness, and use full body activities to learn about healthy recognition and expression of emotions.

Mental illness touches all of our lives in some way. In 2014, the National Institute of Mental Health reported that there were an estimated 43.6 million adults in the U.S. with a mental illness — 18.1% of all adults in the United States. Mental illness can happen to anyone, it is treatable, and it is important for us as a society to talk about it.

Mental Health: Mind Matters gives us the words we need to start conversations, the words we might avoid, and the wisdom to be advocates instead of judges. Star Tribune
Creativity has transformed the emotional and unspoken into an environment where the unseen can become seen and experienced. Columbia Daily Tribune

Inside the Exhibition

Interactive components feature definitions and descriptions of mental illnesses, and examine the history of treatments.

  • Test your knowledge about common misperceptions of mental illnesses and mental health.
  • Peer into mini-dioramas depicting how attitudes toward people with mental illnesses have varied over time. 

  • Watch animations that explore theories about the biological basis for depression and psychosis.

Empathy-building experiences demonstrate what some people who live with mental illnesses may experience. 

  • Listen to the thoughts of a father who is living with depression and the reactions of his wife and son.
  • Try noise-distorting headphones to experience the difficulties some people with symptoms of psychosis may experience if they are unable to filter out sounds in their environment.

  • Hear from people — in their own words — about how mental illnesses affect their lives.

Sensory-based games explore the healthy expressions of emotions.

  • Play an emotion recognition game that invites you to act out an emotion using only facial expressions. You will discover that it is a challenging task, and it is even more challenging for other visitors to interpret.
  • Match your body language with oversized masks.

  • Discover how artistic activities like painting, dancing, and writing can help us identify and express our emotions, and strengthen our mental health.

  • Move your body to the beat and learn about the connection between physical activity and mental health.

  • Write down your worries and shred them in the Worry Shredder.

Mental Health: Mind Matters was produced for North America by the Science Museum of Minnesota in collaboration with Heureka: The Finnish Science Centre.

Special exhibitions are generously supported by Union Pacific.

The Bullock Texas State History Museum is a division of the State Preservation Board. Additional support of exhibitions and programs is provided by the Texas State History Museum Foundation.