There have been some forays, recently, into new ways of approaching health care in our institutions and facilities. Hospitals have been embracing the arts, as confederates in the healing mission. Bodies, like The Institute for Creative Health, have been organising conferences to drive the power of creativity to aid healing and bring about better health outcomes. The arts, which have long been associated with indulgence and destruction through the publicised excesses of various artists at the pointy end of their callings, are pushing the fact that the greater majority of creative people are happy, healthy and free of disease.

Creative Methods of Health Care

There is no denying that in our Christianised western cultures that the Protestant work ethic has characterised the lives of most of its denizens. Art has only played its part, generally, in early education for the masses and in performance for the privileged few, through expressions like opera, ballet and art gallery openings. Some of these privileged few would like to change that and see art freed from its cultural chains to be shared in new roles as a creative champion of healing. In places like Brisbane’s Lady Cilento Children’s Hospital the walls are alive with kiddies’ murals created by the children themselves, embodying the healing power of making art.

There are performances and workshops happening inside the wards of this new facility. Arts-in health programs are walking tall down the corridors of this children’s hospital. There are signs of life emblazoned on these walls for all to see, instead of numbing bare white walls as per usual inside these state funded institutions. The Institute for Creative Health was founded in 2006 and has been a leader in this new health revolution. There are great artists like Robyn Archer involved in this group, along with many patrons of the arts.

There is a growing recognition that the healing journey can be difficult and eased by some guided creative expression. That calm can descend upon patients who are involved in some drawing, painting or another creative task. It can act as a useful escape from a focus on your own unwellness. Rather than feeling anxious and melancholy about being sick, the patient is absorbed in the creative pursuit. A bit like getting out of your own way, at times, to allow the physical body to get on with healing itself, free from being burdened with negative moods and feelings. Click here for more healing.