Why art? Exploring the contribution to mental well-being of the creative aspects and processes of visual art-making in an arts and mental health course

Secker, Jenny and Heydinrych, Kirsten and Kent, Lyn and Keay, Jo (2017) Why art? Exploring the contribution to mental well-being of the creative aspects and processes of visual art-making in an arts and mental health course. Arts & Health. pp. 1-13. ISSN 1753-3015

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Official URL: https://doi.org/10.1080/17533015.2017.1326389

Abstract

Background: Evaluations of participatory arts and mental health projects have consistently found improvements in mental well-being but the part played by the creative aspects, as distinct from the benefits of social interaction, remains unclear. Methods: This study explored the specific part played by the creative aspects of introductory arts courses that aim to improve mental well-being. Nine course participants consented to recording of accreditation assessment meetings held with them towards the end of their course. Results: Thematic analysis identified themes relating to two categories: creative processes and the learning that ensued. The creative processes were playful experimentation and inspiration. Learning processes revolved around learning to learn and artistic development. Conclusions: Previous studies have found play, inspiration and learning to be associated with well-being. It therefore seems reasonable to conclude that the creative aspects of the courses did play an important part in improving participants’ well-being.

Item Type: Journal Article
Keywords: visual arts, mental health, interviewing, thematic analysis
Faculty: Faculty of Health, Social Care & Education (for research post September 2011)
Depositing User: Ian Walker
Date Deposited: 08 Aug 2017 13:00
Last Modified: 14 Nov 2017 15:04
URI: http://arro.anglia.ac.uk/id/eprint/702062

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