Issue 273

Arts and health

Image of dancers in hospital
Photo: Judy Baxter (CC by NC SA 2.0)

A breakthrough in the way that arts in health programmes are developed and researched is set to transport arts activity into the health research mainstream. Tim Joss explains the power of the new AESOP 1 framework.

Everyone working in the arts knows the power of the arts to transform lives. You know it through your own experience. And you know it from witnessing your projects’ effect on audiences and participants. For a long time this has been enough to justify the awarding of public funds: powerful anecdotes, expressions of belief and testimonials from beneficiaries backed up by audience and participation data. No longer. Later than many other departments of national and local government, culture is...

Also in this feature

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A shared set of values to assess quality and outcomes needs to replace providing evidence of clinical effectiveness for arts interventions, believes Jane Willis.

Photo: Jim Wileman
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The findings of a visual arts project for people with mental health problems make the case for further investment in the arts, health and wellbeing sector, says Gavin Clayton.

Image from The Spaces Between

A three-year theatre residency at a secure clinic for forensic psychiatry patients is benefiting not just patients but carers and staff too, say Fiona Miller and Karen Richard.

Photo: Kim Beveridge
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Many participants in the Old Vic’s community projects now lead healthier and more active lifestyles, according to Alexander Ferris and his team.

Photo: Guilherme Zühlke O'Connor
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Andy Wild gives an artist's perspective on how his work has had a positive impact on his life since he was diagnosed with cancer.

Image of chair, tape etc

Clive Niall describes two hospital projects where young people showed what was possible through participatory art practices.

Image of performers in One Step Forward

Dance workshops, courses and events in Somerset have allowed over 400 people with mental health issues to ‘escape their troubled minds’. Viv Gordon discusses their impact.

Image from Jack and Gill and the Red Post-Box

A drama project has brought research on dementia to life for healthcare professionals as well as directly benefiting people with the condition. Cathy Bailey explains how.