The role of art in healthcare facilities goes back at least as far as the ancient Egyptians. During the break-out sessions I facilitated a well attended workshop using creative arts and drama methods with a group of dietitians drawing on the powerful image of the kitchen as a significant place to access meaningful connections through visualization and memory.
The work of Socialiniai Meno Projektai continues to flourish, and as part of the exhibition of work by people affected by homelessness currently running in the National Art Gallery of Lithuania, a discreet arts project by Andrejaus Kibisovo is currently receiving rave reviews in national press and TV. This coverage of an artist who lives outside the system is quite exception.
There is also evidence that use of art and music reduces hospital stays, with studies showing earlier discharges among patients taking part in visual and performing arts interventions than among those not doing so. 69 , 70 In 1 study, surgery or critical care patients who participated in guided imagery or had a picture of a landscape on their wall had a decreased need of narcotic pain medication relative to their counterparts and left the hospital earlier.
The groundbreaking book introduces an emerging and rapidly growing field with a dynamic collection of illustrative articles featuring artists, leading academics, health researchers, nurse educators, physicians, educators, environmentalists and others who actively use the creative arts in interdisciplinary practice in cutting edged research and in methodologies for health, hope and change.
In November 2014 at The Power of the Arts National Conference in Ottawa, Dr. Catherine Morley, Assistant Professor in The School of Nutrition and Dietetics at Acadia University, approached me about writing an ethnodrama based on research about feeding aging family members.