Researcher, Artist, Activist, Lecturer, Consultant, and Founder & CEO of Traumascapes, a survivor-led organisation dedicated to changing the ecosystem of trauma and creating new horizons for survivors through art and science.
My research focuses on the embodied experience of childhood trauma and the development of novel creative interventions, such as Trauma-Focused Movement Language (TFML), a survivor-led and body-based approach to healing trauma. My art practice explores the reclaiming and rewriting of the sociocultural narrative of trauma on survivors’ own terms. My consultancy work spans trauma-informed and trauma-sensitive practice; survivor research and lived experience involvement in mental health science; and arts for health.
I am a Visiting Lecturer on the MASc Creative Health at UCL and the MSc Creative Arts and Mental Health at Queen Mary University of London; Seminar Lead in Women's Mental Health and Honorary Research Associate of the Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology, and Neuroscience at King's College London; Patient and Community Involvement Lead for the NIHR ARC National Priorities Programme: Mental Health Implementation Network; and Editorial Advisory Board Member of The Lancet Psychiatry.
I trained as a dancer with the Ballet de la Côte in Switzerland and studied arts at Central Saint Martins; mental health sciences at Queen Mary University of London; and traumatic stress at the Justice Resource Institute. I was also awarded Improvement Leader Fellow by NIHR CLAHRC NWL and Imperial College London. I have worked with many universities, NHS Trusts, NHS England, the NIHR, Public Health England, Wellcome, and others, and I have published articles and book chapters, presented widely, and exhibited internationally, including at the V&A, Whitechapel Gallery, Royal Albert Hall, and BFI, and some of my artwork is in the Central Saint Martins Museum Collection.
To find out more, see Laura Fischer: The Art and Science of Transforming Trauma in
The Lancet Psychiatry.
Founder & CEO, Traumascapes
Visiting Lecturer, MASc Creative Health, UCL
Visting Lecturer, MSc Creative Arts and Mental Health, Queen Mary University of London
Seminar Lead in Women's Mental Health, BSc Psychology, King's College London
Honorary Research Associate, King's College London
Honorary Research Associate, UCL
Editorial Advisory Board Member, The Lancet Psychiatry
Editorial Board Member, QI4U
Improvement Leader Fellow, NIHR CLAHRC NWL
Member, Violence Abuse and Mental Health Network
Member, UAL Creative Practices, Education, and Wellbeing Research Network
2022 Panellist, Peer Research Methods with Survivors of Modern Slavery, Survivor Alliance, webinar
2022 Speaker, Annual Scientific Meeting, NIHR School for Public Health Research, webinar
2022 Panellist, Centre for Society and Mental Health Festival, Science Gallery, London, UK
2021 Panellist, Lived Experience in Peer Review, The Lancet, webinar
2021 Speaker, Annual Scientific Meeting, NIHR School for Public Health Research, webinar
2021 Speaker, Annual Conference, Public Health England, webinar
2021 Speaker, Violence, Abuse and Mental Health Network Event, VAMHN, webinar
2021 Speaker, Youth mental health and COVID-19, Emerging Minds / The Centre for Society and Mental Health, webinar
2020 Speaker, Mad Hearts: The Arts and Mental Health, Queen Mary University of London, webinar
2020 Speaker, Understanding Violence, Abuse and Mental Health, VAMHN, webinar
2020 Panellist, Mental Health Question Time: Should culture be prescribed on the NHS?, London, UK
2019 Plenary Speaker, Royal College of Psychiatrist Annual Conference for NW England, Nottingham, UK
2019 Speaker & Panellist, Vulnerability and Resistance Symposium, Central Saint Martins, London, UK
2019 Keynote Speaker, Brunel Occupational Therapy Conference, Brunel University, London, UK
2019 Plenary Speaker, Wellbeing Event, Chelsea and Westminster Hospital, London, UK
2018 Plenary Speaker, Journée Romande des Soins Infirmiers, healthcare conference, Lausanne, Switzerland
2018 Keynote Speaker, The Bigger Picture: Activism, Social Practice & Art, Central Saint Martins, London, UK
2018 Keynote Speaker, Sheffield Healthcare Improvement Event, Sheffield NHS Foundation Trust, Sheffield, UK
2018 Panellist, Scottish Mental Health Arts and Film Festival, Glasgow, UK
2018 Speaker & Panellist, MCA Expo, Sheffield, UK
2018 Plenary Speaker, Collaborative Learning Event, NIHR CLAHRC NWL, London, UK
2017 TEDx Talk Speaker, The Happy Generation, TEDxULB, Brussels, Belgium
2017 Speaker, Future Citizen Innovation Series, Amazon WS, London, UK
2016 Speaker, Kent Mental Health Festival, Folkestone, UK
Exhibitions, Screenings, Performances
2019 Exhibition (led + curated),Traumatised Selves: A Collective Voice, Willesden Gallery, London, UK
2019 Film Screening, Trauma and Resistance, Whitechapel Gallery, London, UK
2018 Film Screening, Scottish Mental Health Arts and Film Festival, Glasgow, UK
2018 Film Screening, Mental Health Arts and Film Festival, Lisbon, Portugal
2018 Film Screening, national television, Switzerland
2017 Exhibition (solo), The Traumatised Self, Willesden Gallery, London, UK
2017 Exhibition (duo), The Character of Physical Law, Willesden Gallery, London, UK
2017 Exhibition (solo), The Traumatised Self, MRC SGDP Centre, KCL, London, UK
2017 Exhibition (group), Central Saint Martins Museum, London, UK
2017 Film Screening, Central Saint Martins, London, UK
2016 Performance (site-specific promenade / collab.), RAH outreach program, Royal Albert Hall, London, UK
2016 Film Screening & Live Score, Silence is Screaming, with Sinfonietta Orchestra, Southwark Playhouse, UK
2016 Exhibition (trio), Focal Perception, ArtMoorHouse, London, UK
2015 Film Screening & Live Score, Winking Through The Gardens, with London Sinfonietta Orchestra, BFI, UK
2015 Exhibition (group), Femme, 1650 Gallery, Los Angeles, USA
2014 Performance (durational / collab.), O&O, Victoria & Albert Museum, London, UK
2013 Performance (site-specifc promenade / collab.), Toynbee, Toynbee Studios, London, UK
2013 Exhibition (group), Waters, 1650 Gallery, Los Angeles, USA
2013 Exhibition (group), Central Saint Martins, London, UK
2011 Performance (ballet), Rodin, Théatre de Beausobre, Morges, Switzerland
2010 Exhibition (solo), Body Language, Metropolis, Morges, Switzerland
2010 Performance (ballet), Maupassant, Temple, Morges, Switzerland
2010 Performance (ballet), Ballet de la Côte, Théatre de St Prex, St Prex, Switzerland
2009 Performance (ballet), Festival de la Danse, St Prex, Switzerland
2008 Exhibition (solo), Body Language, Le Tempo, Yverdon, Switzerland
2005 Exhibition (solo), Body Language, Art Gallery Casamundo, Morges, Switzerland
Fischer & Kneebone (forthcoming). ‘Embodying mental health: making arts intrinsic to training and practice.’
Dykxhoorn, Fischer, et al. (2022). ‘Conceptualising Public Mental Health: Development of a conceptual framework for public mental health,’ BMC Public Health.
Chevous, Fischer, Perôt, Sweeney (2020). ‘Safe, Seen, Supported: How to reach and help children and young people experiencing abuse in their household’, VAMHN.
Duncan et al. On behalf of the NIHR SPHR Public Mental Health Programme. (2020). ‘Delivery of community centred public mental health interventions in diverse areas in England: a mapping study protocol’, BMJ Open.
Fischer, L. (2019). ‘Trauma-Focused Movement Language’, The Lancet Psychiatry, 6(12), pp.991-993.
Fischer, L. (2019). ‘Violence and Trauma: A societal reality we are all responsible for’, in Perriman, B. Doorways. London: House Sparrow Press, pp.96-103.
Matthews, Green, Myron, French, Barber, Dionne, Sandra, Fischer (2019). ‘Connections: the power of learning together to improve healthcare in the UK,’ Organizational Behaviour in Healthcare. London: Palgrave Macmillan, pp.129-167.
Fischer, L. (2018). ‘Amygdala,’ in Poésie en Mouvement, Arythmie, pp. 54-57.
2018 Winner, Mental Health Arts and Film Festival of Portugal, Lisbon, Portugal
2017 NOVA Award Nominee, Central Saint Martins, London, UK
2011 BCV Award for Academic Excellence, Morges, Switzerland
2008 Award for Visual Arts, Morges, Switzerland
2008 Award for Photography, Morges, Switzerland
2008 Award for Political Science, Morges, Switzerland