Bridging Science and the Arts to Impact Lives

The Foundation for Art & Healing explores the relationship between health and creative expression through rigorous scientific research; empowers individuals, communities, and vulnerable populations coping with challenging conditions like trauma and chronic illness, through direct, impactful, and innovative programs and tools; and engages, informs, and inspires these populations and the ever-growing arts and healing community, building awareness through thought leadership, shared stories of “art and healing,” and original creative works.

  • Exploration

    Studying the link between creative expression and health.
     

    The Diabetes Journey


    A grant from Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts Foundation has opened new doors to explore the benefits of creative arts and storytelling in dealing with the physical and emotional demands of chronic illness. We have recently launched a clinical study at Boston Medical Center, partnering with leading biomedical researchers and award-winning playwright and professor Robbie McCauley, whose own experiences with diabetes led her down the creative path with her one-woman play, Sugar.

    Read Robbie's Story
    BMC Study

  • Empowerment

    Providing arts-based solutions for coping with life’s health-related challenges.

    Coping with Trauma and PTSD


    From initiatives to address combat related PTSD, to tools for responding to tragedies like the Sandy Hook Elementary shootings and Boston Marathon Bombing, to helping women and children cope through the aftermath of the Van, Turkey earthquake, the Foundation for Art & Healing is making a very real impact with direct arts-based initiatives, empowering individuals and communities through creative expression.

    Learn about Our PTSD Initiatives Read about the Van Art Project Breaking Barriers through Art Huffington Post: Dr. Nobel’s Response to the Boston Marathon Bombings

  • Engagement

    Sharing stories of hope, healing, and possibility to activate and inspire others.

    Can Art Be Medicine?


    Whether through expressive writing, music, movement or visual media, all the arts are able to change people's perspectives, moods, relationships and overall health. As we study the science of creative expression as a path to healing, and put it into action through our initiatives, we also work toward broadening awareness of the power of art to discover, explore and share what is most important to us as individuals and ultimately through that process, to heal. In that spirit, we offer real stories of hope, healing, and possibility to engage both those who seek health, and those who seek to help.

    Read Personal Stories
    Explore News Stories and Resources

BR McDonald, Founder and President of the Veterans Artist Program

It’s the most wonderful time of the year. Except when it isn’t. The rush and excitement of the holiday season can often be woven with lofty expectations and an unparalleled pressure to please. A seemingly inherent need often surfaces to be everything to everybody—and that can take a toll. “It’s good for anyone to manage […]

Mask from National Intrepid Center of Excellence Art Therapy Program
Mask from National Intrepid Center of Excellence Art Therapy Program

Art & Healing PTSD

Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) and Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) represent significant burdens for those afflicted, as well as their caregivers and military and civilian healthcare delivery systems.

Given this suffering and strain, new approaches to address the treatment of PTSD & TBI are urgently needed to help active service members thrive while performing their duties, and also to ensure they integrate safely with society while off-duty or when they make the transition to veteran status.

» Read the Complete PTSD Program Overview

Harlan Krumholz MD, SM

“If we can demonstrate that emotion affects outcomes and art affects emotion, then a logical path to better outcomes would involve more attention to engaging people in artistic pursuits.”

Edward Hirsch

“Poetry (whose root is the Greek poesis or ‘making’) both reflects our own experience and transforms it. The activity of making something artistically is transformative but not entirely rational. Individuals take their obsession, grief, pain and hope and try to turn it into something. This ‘making’ may not result in a cure but it is ultimately healing.”

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