November 2017


Arts & Health in the Media

Ausdance asks government to help older Victorians keeps dancing for better health

Art and soul: how sparking your creativity helps you stay well

Teen cancer survivor delivers art kits to young patients in the hospital

Poignant works of art show the reality of mental illness

Gallatin Mental Health Festival

'I feel better for singing': the choir tackling mental health stigma

MWI clients put on art show

The art of gratitude: Doctors say giving thanks improves your health

UConn Health lost hundreds of pieces of art

Research Shows Art Therapy Helps the Brain to Heal

With Art in Mind: a gallery dedicated to understanding, protecting and sustaining mental health

Art therapy project helps lift spirits in Hong Kong

Building a better relationship with your spouse with art therapy

For One Physician, Art of Medicine Includes Art

Health Matters: Musical Healing for Kids

Arts and culture contribute £11.8bn to UK economy

Why Impact Investing Funds Need To Invest In Creativity

2017 Building Better Healthcare Awards - Winners are announced



De-medicalising Dementia

RSPH Blog: How the arts can help to change hearts and minds

RSPH Guest blog: Tackling social issues with the arts


Research, Publications & Resources

Late Opening: Arts and Older People in Scotland. Late Opening discusses the timely cultural impact of these projects, presenting 14 case studies that explore the importance of this work nationwide for culture, community and health and wellbeing. It also celebrates a slice of initiatives giving voice to the creative, cultural, political and economic power of our older population.

Late Opening is written by Andrew Eaton-Lewis and has been commissioned by Luminate and The Baring Foundation and funded by The Baring Foundation. The publication was launched during Luminate'€™s 6th festival in October 2017 by Jeane Freeman MSP, Minister for Social Security.

Arts and Healthcare. The role that the arts can play in supporting healthcare delivery and wellbeing has been widely acknowledged and has grown in recent decades in the UK and internationally. This edition of the engage journal explores the contribution that the visual arts can make to the environment of UK hospitals and medical centres and how engagement with the visual arts can impact on the lives of patients, staff and carers. How willing are those in the medical professions to engage with the arts, and what are the barriers to this? How can we work in partnership? What is the key current research into the benefits of arts and health projects, and what future research is needed in order to have an impact on policy?


Music and Mental Health report. A report about the second phase of Help Musicians UK research into music and mental health has just been published.

Arts and Health guides and toolkits. The online Repository for Arts & Health Resources has some useful Guides, Booklets and Toolkits for use by a range of professionals involved in Arts and Health practice. These include:

  • Singing for Health:Tips and Tactics

  • Singing and People with COPD

  • Singing and People with Dementia

  • Singing and People with Parkinson's

  • Singing and Mental Health

  • Dancing for older peoples’ health and well-being toolkit

  • Singing for older peoples’ health and well-being

  • Commissioning dance for health and well-being: Guidance and resources for commissioners

  • A guide to setting up an activity group


Mendoza Review demands local authorities connect museums and health A major, new review of museums has called for better collaboration across the sector to maximise museums’ social impact. The review cites the significant impact museums can have on the health and wellbeing of individuals and communities.


Prescriptions: Artists’ Books on Wellbeing and Medicine. The exhibition catalogue Prescriptions: Artists’ Books on Wellbeing and Medicine has been published: it explores the role book arts can play in raising awareness of the richness and value of lived accounts of illness.


Research shows importance of quality in creative engagement Creative Scotland has published new research into the impact of taking part in creative programmes on young people. It demonstrates that the most effective projects are those where young people are “there to do and make something creative and if there are other benefits that is a bonus. The programmes will not be successful if the participants feel that they are getting ‘youth work by the back door’.”


Wellbeing increase in UK. Figures released by the Office for National Statistics show an increase in reported wellbeing for people in England. The report - based on interviews with 100,000 people covered the period June 2016-June 2017. It showed that average ratings of life satisfaction, feeling that the things we do in life are worthwhile and happiness have increased slightly in the UK and improvements in life satisfaction, worthwhile and happiness ratings in the UK were driven by England, the only country where average ratings across these measures improved. People in Northern Ireland report the highest levels of personal well-being, when compared with the UK average.

Transitions in Later Life – evaluation report Calouste Gulbenkian and the Centre for Ageing Better have published an evaluation of seven pilot projects that explores how psycho-social approaches can help support a more positive transition into retirement


Quick guide to partnerships between arts organisations and health commissioners The National Council for Voluntary Organisations has co-produced The Art of the Possible with the Association of Directors of Public Health to support closer partnership work to prevent illness and improve existing conditions.


Events & Conferences

How to Commission Art in Your Healthcare Environment Webinar. Artists and design professionals are working collaboratively across the globe to create amazing art projects in healthcare environments that energize, soothe, and provide positive distractions. Commissioned art projects are created in collaboration with the client and design team for the space. Across industries these projects are beautifying and transforming the places in which we live, work, play, and heal. This webinar will focus on methods, tools, and inspiration for commissioning art in healthcare environments. The presenter will discuss how to determine your art requirements, finding the right artist, managing RFPs for artwork, and using digital tools to streamline the commission workflow process by:

  • Exploring the various methods of commissioning, from local to international calls

  • Finding where to seek the appropriate artist, style of art, and budget for your space(s)

  • Learning what tools exist for research, planning, and commissioning

  • Gain inspiration for creating unique artwork for your healthcare environments.

Thursday, December 7, 2017, time: 11:00 am Pacific / 2:00 pm Eastern, duration: 60 minutes. US $65 Individual View/$150 Group View


Writing for Wellbeing An eight week online course to explore the ways in which therapeutic and reflective writing can be used.

15 January

Arts in Health Research Intensive at the University of Florida Presented by the University of Florida Center for Arts in Medicine and the Arts Health Early Career Research Network. The Arts in Health Research Intensive is designed to provide a rich introduction to the field of arts in health and fundamentals in evaluation and research. Across five days, participants will:

  • explore the development and scope of the field

  • consider the physiological, social and behavioural impacts of the arts in a health context

  • analyse research and evaluation methodologies that underpin the field

  • learn about practicalities, issues and methods in arts in health research

  • engage in group-based discussions, program and protocol development, and presentation

This course is suitable for anyone with a background or interest in the arts, healthcare, community health or social care, and research, and who wishes to learn more about the field and meet others who share their interests. No research experience is necessary, and all levels of experience are welcome. Scholarships are available to those coming from the UK.

January 29 - February 2


The Sing to Beat Parkinson's Symposium. Join leading arts and health researchers for a 2-day international symposium that explores the use of singing, and arts more broadly, with Parkinson’s patients and their carers. The Queensland Conservatorium Research Centre is proud to support the first “Sing to Beat Parkinson’s®” Symposium and Concert in Australia which will be held at the Queensland Conservatorium Griffith University. The Symposium and Concert will encourage the exploration of the contribution of group singing to the health and well-being of people with Parkinson’s and their carers, and also celebrate the completion of a six-month research project in SE Queensland.

Program highlights include: A Keynote by Prof Grenville Hancox Sing to Beat Parkinson’s® program founder, UK. Workshops & panels on Parkinson's choir facilitation, international examples of singing interventions with people with Parkinson's, allied health approaches to Parkinson's care, key issues in the field of arts and Parkinson's research and neurosciences and the carer as well as a celebratory concert featuring participants from the Australian Sing to Beat Parkinson’s® program.

2 - 3 February

Music and Mindfulness Training. Wiltshire Music Connect is running a Music and Mindfulness  practical workshop which is aimed at both non-music teachers and music teachers/tutors, Key Stages 1 &2 (also suitable for anyone interested) Explore how you can set a mood and foster a learning environment using music making and listening

7 February, 9am to 12.30pm, Wiltshire Music Centre, Bradford on Avon

Cost: Working in Wiltshire - £38 and Not working in Wiltshire - £49


Training in reminiscence arts in dementia care – The European Reminiscence Network is inviting applications for a 2-day training course to be held at the University of Greenwich.

18 & 19 January

An Introduction to Dance for Parkinson’s – Dance for Parkinson’s Partnership UK and People Dancing, in partnership with Yorkshire Dance are offering a weekend training course in structuring dance activity for people living with Parkinson’s.

14 & 15 April

International Conference of Arts and Health, Amsterdam. The Art Education Committee/Chinese Adult Education Association and Creative Arts in Education and Therapy journal are holding their first International Conference of Arts and Health (ICAH), bringing together experts and leaders from China and Europe.

7-9 May

Creativity and Wellbeing 2018. Following the success of this year’s Creativity and Wellbeing festival we are pleased to announce the dates for next year’s celebration of health and creativity. The week will take place from 4th to 10th June 2018 and we expect it to be bigger than ever. This year, there were over 330 events with more than 35,000 people attending.

4th to 10th June

The Arts in Society 2018 The Thirteenth International Conference on The Arts in Society will be held at Emily Carr University of Art + Design, Vancouver, Canada 27–29 June 2018. We encourage you to register for the conference by the Advance Registration Deadline: 27 September 2017.

27–29 June


Call for Papers

European Healthcare Design Congress and Exhibition The Call for Papers is now open for the fourth European Healthcare Design 2018 (EHD2018) Congress & Exhibition, organised by Architects for Health and SALUS Global Knowledge Exchange around the theme of "Utopia or dystopia? Visioning the future of health".

Deadline 8 December

Museums and wellbeing survey. The National Alliance for Museums, Health and Wellbeing is conducting a second sector-wide survey to provide information about the ongoing development of health and wellbeing work in museum. The survey will inform the future of the Alliance as preparations develop for its merger with the National Alliance for Arts, Health and Wellbeing in 2018.


Opportunities, Funding & Training

Royal Hobart Hospital Redevelopment Art Commissions. Applications are sought from contemporary artists for two separate commissions (Part A and Part B) for the Royal Hobart Hospital Redevelopment.

Part A Suspended lightweight artworks in the central entry atrium. The Artist's Brief encourages the commissioned artist/s to develop an immersive artwork of contemporary design possibly referencing the natural environment and potentially activating ephemeral light and movement. The artist however is not restricted to this approach within their conceptual framework.

Part B ‘Digital quilt’ new media artwork on the ground floor with associated 2D components integrated into C Block ground floor glass panels & K Block lift lobbies on eight floors. The digital quilt concept is based upon an artwork that uses multiple images/patterns/colours designed as a projected work onto the wall, screen based work which has the potential to change over time OR other emerging and experimental technologies.

Introduction to Therapeutic and Reflective Writing This eight-week online course in writing for personal and professional development provides an introduction to journal writing, life writing, biblio-poetry therapy and reflective writing, it will provide skills, techniques and resources for both personal exploration and for use with clients and groups.  Teaching will take place in a flexible, virtual classroom with peer interaction and professional feedback and guidance. The course is suitable for those wishing to experience writing for self- development or those wishing to use it to work with others. Email Venue: Online

Cost: £399 (10 per cent discount available on bookings made for this course by Dec 15.  Apply discount code: newsletterdiscount at checkout).

Starts January 15

Running Writing Groups. Discover how to design, launch and facilitate your own writing group. This new six-week online course, led by experienced practitioners Victoria Field and Anne Taylor will furnish writers, academics and counsellors with the skills and confidence to run writing workshops. As you work through each weekly session, you will explore what makes an effective writing group environment, gain the tools and resources for designing a writing group of your own, and devise a strategy for delivering workshops. Venue: Online

Cost:£399 (10 per cent discount available on bookings made for this course by Dec 15.  Apply discount code: newsletterdiscount at checkout).

Starts January 22

Arts & Health South West is launching its Catalyst Challenge Fund, supported by Arts Council England. Three selected organisations will be challenged to raise £2000 via individual giving, which AHSW will match with a £2000 Catalyst Fund. This means that organisations taking part have an opportunity to raise up to £4000, for whatever they choose (core work, i.e. general organisation costs and project work are both eligible)

Deadline 31st January


Arts Development Manager. Music In Detention has been taking music-making into immigration detention centres since 2005, and out again into the community since 2007. We are the only organisation in the UK focused on arts provision in immigration detention, and have pioneered the use of music-making to connect detainees to excluded and stigmatised groups in the community, enabling them to create and exchange music and lyrics with each other and build empathy and solidarity. We meet their urgent need for self-expression, bring them the joy of creativity and help them to find how much they have in common.

So we are looking for an exceptional individual with creative flair, a talent for collaboration, strong organisational skills and an understanding of system change. Experience of participatory arts programmes and in comparable settings will be an advantage, but ultimately we are most interested in your skills and aptitudes and how you have acquired them, and less concerned with matching your experience to ours. Equally, if you’re a practitioner that will certainly be relevant, but the key thing is that you will understand our artistic practice, see how it might be developed, and have the ability to get everyone in MID to be a part of those changes.

Deadline 1.00pm 7 December.

Post-Doctoral Research Fellow in Arts & Health (Fixed Term 36 months). An exciting opportunity has arisen for a motivated individual with research experience and proven ability to write for publication, to work for the newly formed Arts in Health Centre of Excellence part of the College of Health & Social Care Research Centre (CHSCRC). The Research Centre was established in 2014 with the support of  funding from NHS England and Derbyshire’s four Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs). The Centre’s main activities have focused around the co-design and delivery of projects with the CCGs, securing external funding and delivery of these projects, and a range of REF-related activities. Going forward, delivering health service evaluations will continue to be a key strand of the Centre’s income generation activity. Alongside this, through close collaboration with the NHS and Clinical Commissioning Groups, and by establishing partnerships with other universities and institutions, the Centre has been working on number of research proposals.

The research fellow is to have primary responsibility for working with our research fellow and academics galvanising research bids from clusters affiliated with the Arts in Health Centre of Excellence, especially orientated towards UOA03. The fellow will be housed within the College of Health & Social Care Research Centre, but will work with cross-College collaborative research bids and bids originating from College clusters. For an informal discussion about the post please post call or email Professor Susan Hogan at 07973353964 or

Assistant Professor – Health Humanities. The University of Toronto Scarborough (UTSC) invites applications for a tenure-stream appointment in Health Humanities at the rank of Assistant Professor. The position will be held jointly in the Interdisciplinary Centre for Health and Society (ICHS) (49%) and in the Department of Anthropology (51%) and will commence on July 1, 2018.

We seek a Health/Medical Humanities scholar with research expertise and disciplinary training in critical approaches to disability studies, mental health, or race and/or racialization and health. Candidates must have a Ph.D. in a media studies discipline or a humanistic social science discipline, such as sociocultural anthropology, by the time of appointment or shortly thereafter. Candidates should be comfortable working in a highly interdisciplinary environment and should be able to convey to undergraduate students the importance of arts-, media- and/or humanities-based approaches to understanding human health. The successful candidate will contribute to the development of our exciting new undergraduate program in Health Humanities, the first of its kind in Canada. ( The ability to contribute to one or more of the research strengths in the ICHS, such as Life Course and Health or Inequality and Health, is also desirable ( Salary will be commensurate with qualifications and experience. If you have questions about this position, please email .  All applications must be submitted online by the closing date of January 10, 2018.

Deadline 10 January

Training for Clinicians - LAHF is running two more training days for clinicians interested in the role the arts can play in supporting their practice. The evening introductory course for doctors, allied health professionals and nurses looks at historical perspectives on health and wellbeing in different cultures, examines key evidence for the impact of arts and culture participation, builds understanding of methods of evaluating arts and health practice, and looks at specific case studies in hospitals and the community. The training is conducted in partnership with University College London and is accredited by the Royal College of Physicians.

27 February & 6 March

UTAS: The Art of Wellness: Visual Arts and Health. UTAS offer a free online course which explores personal and community health and wellness strategies using visual arts mediums. Each online module showcases the applied use of creative visual practices and is designed to introduce you to a range of practices that promote focus and connectedness to ourselves, our relationships and the world around us. In “The Art of Wellness” students will learn how visual art practices are used in expressive therapies, community healthcare initiatives, and enhancing community health benefits. Central to the learning are many hands-on visual arts activities aimed at introducing the key principles of visual arts based practices in healthcare. The short course takes students around 6 hours to complete.