Creative Expression Approach

Art is the expression or application of human creativity and imagination. Whether it’s a poem, a doodle, or a musical, art – in all its forms – captures ideas, conveys emotion, and unpacks experiences and reveals perspectives reflective of individual and collective circumstances.

What’s compelling about creative arts is its accessibility. Anyone can make something meaningful, there are countless outlets for expression, and it provides a powerful vehicle that unifies us with a shared sense of reality that helps us feel connected and make sense of the world.

The Science of Creativity

The arts are transformational and engage our hearts, our minds, and our souls. They have universal appeal and elevate empathy, compassion, and connection on an individual level. From a societal perspective, art can be a unifying force to decreasing social barriers and strengthening interpersonal connections.

Creative expression also has the power to improve wellbeing by helping us understand ourselves and shifting perspectives that reinforce positive behaviors. Physiologically, making art has powerful effects on our bodies: reducing blood pressure, bolstering our immune system, improving brain cognition, and fighting inflammation.

The arts contribute to “core determinants of health; playing a critical role in health promotion; helping to prevent the onset of mental illness and age-related physical decline; supporting the treatment or management of mental illness, noncommunicable diseases and neurological disorders; and assisting in acute and end-of-life care. (Source: World Health Organization, 2019)

Builds confidence and empowers self-care

Creating art provides a simple, tangible opportunity for a person to accomplish a task and demonstrates the benefits to self-efficacy.

Connects you to a  moment, yourself, and others

Art can be a path towards self-reflection, mindfulness, as well as interpersonal engagement and connection.

Provides an outlet for expression

Creative expression can sometimes articulate what words can’t, helping to bring complex or difficult thoughts and feelings into view.

Art’s Significance

Creative arts have been used throughout civilizations as an essential component to human flourishing – providing valuable insight into cultural traditions and a portrait of our values and ideals of societies. In recent years, there has been an increased interest and growing body of scientific evidence to prove its efficacy in promoting and managing health. Today, there’s extraordinary potential to combine the arts with modern science and health practices to better utilize creative expression as a public health medicine.

Our Approach

As Americans face new health challenges and healthcare adapts to meet 21st century needs, it’s essential that our society adopt innovative solutions to improve health and wellbeing. Stepping into the new health frontier following COVID-19, forward-thinking strategies and collaborative partnerships are critical to creating opportunities that maximize the health and wellbeing of individuals and communities. We believe that the arts support long-lasting health and provides affordable and effective innovation potential for us all.

The Foundation for Art & Healing combines medical science with proven arts-based strategies to grow unique, meaningful, and effective programs. Art naturally serves as a catalyst for self-expression, and with years of research and experience, we’ve seen first-hand that art can build self-confidence, foster community belonging, and support pro-health health behaviors/ improved wellbeing.

Art is uniquely positioned to produce short-term and long-term benefits for people due to four distinct properties.


Art gets our attention and captures our interest.


Creativity motivates us towards achieving higher, more ambitious goals.


Participating in creative expression activates a sense of confidence and intentionality.


Creative arts help people develop a shared sense of belonging and togetherness to form stronger bonds with others and with themselves.

Get Involved

Partner on a Program

Follow the example of our community partners and start a program to improve your community’s health by using proven creative expression methods.

Sponsor an Initiative

Expand our capacity to offer affordable programs to community partners by contributing to the funding and development of our national initiatives.

The Foundation for Art & Healing