Fine Line: Mental Health/Mental Illness
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Comments from thousands posted by visitors to the show:

Tonight I have become a listener. Beth

The most enlightening exhibit I have ever seen. Kathy S.

The portraits themselves are striking. Thank you for bringing mental illness to light. Both my mother and grandmother suffered from it. AMP

As a person who has agoraphobia, panic attacks I want to thank all the courageous individuals who shared their lives as they live w/mental illness and mental health. I have been very encouraged and don’t feel so alone anymore. This gallery feels like a sanctuary to me. D.C.

As a mental health professional & a person with a mental illness, I understand & can feel with compassion how these people struggle each day to stay sane. It is such hard work. I thank you for this wonderful exhibit. It is time that more people understand mental illness as an "illness" just like diabetes is an illness. It only takes one moment in time for anyone to cross that fine line. All people need to remember this. These are real, courageous people who have shared their stories. Jeff

I am changed by every story. Michael you are a visionary. Thank you for this profoundly moving exhibit. Cindy, Mother of Autistic son

Very impressive and revealing. I had never thought about schizophrenia like that.


The exhibits that I have seen today made me realize I am not alone about some of my thoughts and experiences. It touched my heart very much. I think it’s amazing how these people let you come in their world for 5 minutes. Thank you. Sincerely, Ashley Orozco

Michael, this little piece of paper can’t hold my thoughts & very profound feelings. The show is reverent, meditative, so very fine & worthy – we want to shout out to people to stop, look, and be human. – Becky Patterson

No textbook past or future is or will be as descriptive as the verbal testimonies mounted on the wall. These are everyday people trying desperately to relay their souls so you would get a glimpse of their world.

My thoughts of suicide are often, so are my actions, This exhibit…filled a space in my heart. Thanks

I work at an answering service. I talk to mentally ill people everyday and now after 2 years of this I know where they are coming from. Thank you TGN

Listen to the silence. You can still hear the voices whispering. You can still feel the tears lingering. I just want to stand in the silence - and listen longer.

I am in a graduate-counseling program right now and work with people that have mental illness in my current job very often. This exhibit was presented so beautifully. I wish everyone would see it.

Very cutting edge! LOVED IT! Really brings the pictures to life!
Jillian Evans

Sometimes you don’t realize the value of life and love. Today I had a reminder of how important it is to take time and realize that life is not only about you but also about others. Thanks Gracie M

It opens your eyes but most importantly it opens your heart to mentally ill people Thanks Jaime

I am studying bipolar disorder for a research project for school. Learning facts from the internet and encyclopedia is one thing, but this exhibit shows the emotions and feelings that go along with bipolar disorder and mental illness in general. This has given me a new perspective. It really opened my eyes. Thank you Sarah

I have a son who is Schizo Affective/bipolar. I related to the sadness of mental illness, the whole family suffers so. But I could see that there is a little bit of insanity in all of us waiting to some out, if we let it, if we don’t’ take care of our minds our thoughts. A wonderful work. Jak

Thank you Michael Nye for this display of much emotion, my sensitivity needed sharpening like these pencils need sharpening – I’ll come back several times to listen.

As a psychiatric nurse & one who has major depression, I can relate. This was so touching & something everyone could benefit from!

I brought my husband. What I could not explain, this exhibit did. I will bring the rest of my family - those who are accepting. Chris B.

An indictment of our failing mental health care & society’s turning its back on such suffering. Yet, such compassion expressed by the sufferers themselves. Thank you, Michael Nye et al. There are so many of us who suffer alone, in silence. BMS

This exhibit is spectacular. It opens up people’s eyes to what they really don’t understand.

A very powerful exhibit. Here people who are in you own community. They should be respected, not treated like trash thrown aside. They should be honored. This exhibit was a powerful and heart breaking exhibit. - Izy

I suffer from bipolar and depression so I know how these people feel and I wish everybody did so they would not be so hard on us. Thank you Erica

It really touched me like I never been touched before. Love, Cindy

Letting people speak for themselves and about their reality, and then listening to them, is such a compassionate act. Developing a voice, using it, being heard, are the fundamental ways in which we evolve as humans. I respect this project and I respect the value of the lives shown here. There is such a fine line between health and non-health. I wish crossing that line didn’t involve so much alienation. I enjoy so much the multi-media concept of these exhibits – it is so elegant a presentation. It was so important for me to see this exhibit b/c I am so enchanted by the idea of the voice allowed to speak, free of an outside interpretation. Thanks Megan Stacy

As a manic-depressive person, I feel the pain of living like these people. The depression is overwhelming sometimes this exhibit is so profound, so true.

It’s hard to breathe in here. I guess you just don’t pay attention to yourself. Kelly Lenner

Cascading feelings of remembrance show me the feelings of others around me as I watch and unfold the feelings inside me on the canvas of other participants. Ernest Hulog

I always thought that I was the only one. With a lot of these problems but a friend brought me here so I’m not the only one. Maria

I have worked with & helped teach chronically mentally ill persons. It is a challenge & a reward. I loved the exhibit. Great work!


My son was diagnosed with schizophrenia last year at the age of 14. I’m still trying to understand the illness and help him. Thanks for your wonderful exhibit. Martie

After 30 yrs I finally understood lives. Why I see people alone & sad & struggle. Everyone has a story. The first time I came it was an emotional experience to me. And I came 2nd time but this time I brought my 15 yr old son. I pray he’ll have the same experience I did. God Bless all G.G.I.

Sad & wonderful at the same time-- loved it. jc

I came to the exhibit a couple of time. I brought a friend of mine who is diagnosed bipolar. I wanted her to see that she is not alone. I came because my mother was mentally ill all her life even though no one would talk about it. She committed suicide. I suffer from depression now and struggle with my pain. I wanted to know the stories of others to help me understand better. This exhibit does a wonderful job of explaining mental illness. Our pain, our struggles and how society views us. I hope it changes the view of those who don’t suffer with Mental illness. Nancy

This exhibit should be seen by everyone especially those who work in Mental Health. The exhibit should travel! It is wonderful! Mary Kraty MS (Health Ed.) Eagleville Hospital Eagelville, PA.

Thank you for this piece. You have revealed and captured the kindness in humanity which I fail to see or practice sometimes.


Thank you, Mr. Nye, for this exhibit. As a psych grad student it is easy to get caught up in the literature & program of mental illness. This exhibit places the focus back where it should-The story of people lives. The narrative. Sarah Suniga

This exhibit was amazing. It broadened my view of the world and showed the importance of Love and compassion towards all people. Kaithin Kelly-Thompson

Gave me a sense of compassion & understanding to the mentally ill. Despite the illnesses themselves these people show integrity, honesty & a love for life. Dave

What a blessing this exhibit is! I think it nailed the point that the line b/w "normalcy" and mental illness is vague to say the least. Don’t we all fall on some continuum of symptoms similar to these? We are all human. Shouldn’t all be treated as such? Tara w/Telecare

I myself have always perceived mental illness as being something strange and unusual. Now my perception is different. Thanks to this exhibit. This has truly been a remarkable and memorable experience Mr. Gordons Psychology Class 2301 - Jose Ortiz

An amazing exhibit of something usually just ignored! Thank you! Arturo Martinez, UIW Eagle Pass TX

I like this exhibit because it has true-life difficulties. My favorite one is about the girl whose brother is bipolar. I rushed to my mom as soon as I heard it because she’s bipolar. Anyways I think the exhibit was great. From Cheyenn

It was a very emotional experience. It moved me to tears! A lot of Dysfunction in our wonderful world. Eileen

I greatly appreciated this great exhibit. Thanks, for sharing and making people aware of mental illness. Not to fear it but to be understanding.

Well done! You have touched my soul. Martha

I have suffered from mental illness myself, and I am a photographer. This is world-class photography combined with incredible honesty about mental illness. A great show! I wish more people could experience it. A.L

This exhibit was amazing. In two different ways. I think that people being able to share there life is very interesting. I was sad. Leanna De Leon

Thank you for giving these people a voice. This exhibit was extremely moving. – Michelle Flores UTSA Graduate Student

I liked that the exhibit didn’t list the mental illness by the picture. It took the focus away from the illness and put it on their life experience and feelings. I was struck by the people’s plea for kindness. Christy Austin Trinity Student

You don’t know anyone’s story until you listen…. Julia

Excellent powerful needs to be in a traveling exhibit/class rooms (college) for students enrolled in social work, psychology, etc. programs- Anne Psychologist Tech

This exhibit is wonderfully fantastic. It shows that everybody need love, has fears, and can grow. I have a better understanding of those of us who are sick and suffer from mental illness. We are all the same, we feel, and love and desire the same things in life. Alex Garcia from SA, TX UTSA down town

This exhibit touched my heart. Taught me a different perspective. My eyes are open now. Thx

This exhibit, it was very weird at first then I realized what was happening. We need to accept mental people I learned a lot. Great.

My name is Jeannie I have Anxiety disorder/depression. This Exhibit made me feel love and thanks love for all the people that walk away from this with a new way at liking at people with mental Illness. Hope for life and what is in store. All my life I have felt by myself in this world of Illness, but now I feel and know that there is lot of it out there and we are great people.

Congratulations on a beautiful exhibit that helps us to understand mental illness. I have worked in this field. President Ronald Reagan closed many facilitation for the mental ill & withdraw funding from agencies in the 1980’s. Shame on our nation for refusing to care for the mentally & physically disabled. C.S.

This exhibit should go on the road for a wider audience. VA MH professional

My mother was institutionalized when I was 5, my father was a sociologist and worked on Ward’s Island with the criminally insane. My cousin is a paranoid schizophrenic and her whole family has a history. Now that I’ve grown up, I’ve chose to help soldiers for the time being.


You have helped me a lot I see into others and it may me realize a lot of things. Thank you. Heather Flanagen

It’s too real. Somehow it makes one think about life and illusion. True heroes. Solmilla

You have helped me look into another world and appreciate it we are all the same yet different I can see that and embrace it without judgement. Adele

The headphones gave a sense of privacy and allowed for true introspection thank you. Monica It is nice to realize that MY FEAR is relative to others. That being alone is not really being alone. John

EXCELLENT! Very compassionate portrayal of People, who live and love and also have mental illness.


I thoroughly enjoyed your work. I don’t think I have gotten to know a person with a mental illness, and so your idea intrigues me. The sympathy I feel makes me feel refreshingly human. I think we lose touch with things as simple as common sympathy for others often. Thank you for making this experience available. Sincerely, Travis Horn International School of the Americans

Michael, This is a moving exhibit. The photographs are beautiful. How can images so beautiful can such touch such deep, often sad places in my heart? Thank you for this original work. C

I am a nurse. I have worked with folks who have mental illness is also in my family too. I have never seen an exhibit like this. Thanks for opening a door to understand. RN Texas

I have found this exhibit to be one of the best ways for people to understand what its like to have a mental illness and that it doesn’t take much to end up, on the street or to be "classified". Molly Montogrra

Pictures and stories were extremely moving and interesting. Photographs were original and very artistic. Most people in the photos didn’t even look as if anything was wrong, so it was interesting to hear what they had to say.


Thanks you! My mother has a mental illness that has profoundly affected all of her children – mostly for the better I think. I love her and am challenged by her and still struggle with accepting her. This exhibit helped!!!!


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