Ice Cream, Dancing & Theatre: Canary Wharf Launches Workshop Series For World Mental Health Day


Canary Wharf is hosting a series of workshops, performances, and installations across October to mark World Mental Health Day on Sunday 10 October.

Graphic artist The Fandangoe Kid – real name Annie Nicholson – famed for her work which aims to smash taboos around trauma and mental health, has curated a series of workshops and talks across the three days.

Nicholson is inviting Londoners to join her at The Fandangoe Whip – a hand-painted, multi-coloured ice cream van that will act as a safe space to host daily workshops. The interactive, installation is dedicated to helping people explore grief, trauma, and the surrealism of the past two years over a friendly cone of mint choc chip. Nicolson’s work will then also be appearing in one of the retail units in Crossrail Place as part of her residency in Canary Wharf across the winter months.

Other events curated by the artist include a zine workshop to explore what the future could hold, a photography session, a dancing experience led by The Fandangoe Kid and an exercise in writing letters that will never be sent.

The events will be ticketed, with all funds raised from ticket sales being donated to Thrive LDN, a charity aiming to improve the mental health and wellbeing of young Londoners.

As part of the Mental Health Awareness activities visitors can also catch a unique 15-minute theatre performance by Wishbone Theatre. The show follows the story of Josie, a high-flyer at work, who suffers from bipolar disorder. The audience will ride along with Josie through the countryside and landscapes of her mind as she navigates her disorder. Created through a collaboration with clinicians and care workers, this show explores bipolar disorder and how a person affected can lead a fulfilling life.

Additional workshops include the Holistica Breathing Circle, where visitors will be taken through a new relaxing breathing technique guided by a calming light installation to help relieve stress.

Fandangoe Whip workshops
8-10 October

Ice Cream for Mental Health
Join The Fandangoe Kid and team for an ice cream and a chat about all things mental health. From pandemic blues to grief wallops to existential crises, the Fandangoe Whip is a place to come and share your experiences, while enjoying an ice cream or two made by East London legends A Portuguese Love Affair.

Future Desires! Zine Workshop with Graphic Artist Saucy Sez
Zines for radical change and radical futures.

What is it that you see or want from your personal future?
What do you want to see change in the world?
What do you hope for the future?

‘Comforting corners of our city’: Workshop with Artist Coco Lom
In the words of Coco Lom: ‘Our world is full of striking patterns, bold colours and unusual shapes – and in difficult times, I find comfort in their confidence and regularity. They make me feel calm. During lockdown, I created a photographic series called Peaceful Patterns, where I captured the many soothing shapes, patterns, and colours that I passed on my walks. When we take the time to stop and deconstruct what we see around us, whether it be nature or architecture, so much of it is a combination of simple forms.

In this workshop, I invite you to search with me. We’ll begin by stepping outside – looking for the quiet city details – up high as well as under our feet. Using the city’s shapes and patterns as inspiration, we’ll make a series of postcards reflecting the overlooked corners of Canary Wharf. I hope you will come away with a soothed mind and a new appreciation for our spectacular city.’

Dancing as a Tool for Survival with The Fandangoe Kid
Join The Fandangoe Kid for an immersive workshop about dancing. What does the dancefloor mean to you? How can we create more inclusive spaces? How do dancing and mental health go together? What does movement mean to you?

Letters That Will Never Be Sent with Lara Haworth
Letters That Will Never Be Sent explores writing as a tool for survival: participants will have a chance to work through some ideas and modes of using writing as a way of working through difficulty, using our own stories and lives as material.

In this workshop, participants are invited to write a letter to someone, or something, that will never be sent. This could be a letter to a person who has died or is no longer in their life. It could address a year – Dear 2020 – or a place – Dear High School. Lara Haworth is a writer, visual artist and filmmaker. Her visual work has been exhibited internationally at places including Yokohama, Japan, Toronto, Canada and Chemnitz, Germany. Her writing has been published in magazines such as Visual Verse, Biography, LAKE, ACME and Nōd. Her new film, All the People I Hurt with My Wedding, was released on April 16 by She Does Filmz.

Tickets for the Fandangoe Whip workshops can be purchased at, with all funds being donated to Thrive LDN, a charity aiming to improve the mental health and wellbeing of all Londoners

Holistica Breathing Circle
1-31 October
Created by mb1 Designs, the Holistica circle is a light installation that teaches users breathing techniques to aid relaxation and stress relief. It uses the ‘4-7-8 count’ breathwork technique, using gentle movement of light to guide users to focus on taking long, deep breaths in and out.

Mountain High Valley Low
5-9 October
Mountain High Valley Low from Wishbone Theatre is the story of Josie, a woman who’s looking for love but has a secret to hide. Josie is affected by bipolar disorder. Her answer is to take up long distance cycling and dating. Things may not totally go to plan…

The play is free to attend with tickets available at