16 Nov

Text and image by Rick McVicar 

     Artful Brain Health is not the only website out there advocating for the use of the arts for recovery from serious health conditions. 

     For instance, a mother tells her story of how art helped her son battle pediatric cancer on kidsandart.org. The mother, Purvi Shah, founded the website after losing her son. Amaey, at the age of 9. The website advocates including art in treatment plans for children with cancer. 

     Amaey was diagnosed with cancer when he was a 3-year-old.

     “This is your child, your life. “You cannot take their pain away, but you sure wish you could make it all better for them,” Shah writes. 

     She paid attention to what brought happiness and peace to her young son. 

     “It was when he was creating art in the hospital therapy room,” Shah notes.   

     Like this website, Shah writes about how science is finding how art is helpful for the healing process. Her site includes a music video, “Cancer Sucks, Art Heals.”

     Another website promoting art for healing purposes is The Healing Power of Art and Artists, founded by Renee Phillips. Phillips is a former member of the Excellence in the Arts Advising Board for the New York City mayor’s office. She has authored several books on art and art business. The website is sponsored by Manhattan Arts International.             

     “We believe Art serves as the catalyst for healing individuals, society and the environment,” according to the website.            

      The site features exhibitions and articles by artists throughout the globe. The current exhibition, running until Nov. 30, is based on the theme of resilience. It comprises 79 paintings with a few words from each artist describing what inspires them.             

     For instance, “Every Day Heroes,” a picture of a first responder holding a child, starts off the online exhibition. 

     The artist, Dr. Michael Durst, writes, “My inspiration… is to build awareness for communities who are facing increased risk from hazards and climate change.”

     Another painting, “Rain Song,” by Sandra Daran Wilson, depicts a mountain with a rain cloud hovering overhead. The work is a part of a series of paintings depicting the effects of wildfires in New Mexico. 

     A smaller exhibition displays art dedicated to veterans and the hope for peace. Quotations from famous people are included. 

     Phillips’ website offers ways for artists to submit their work for consideration to be featured on the site. Viewers can become friends of the site as a way to promote their artwork and websites. 

     Please feel free to comment or share on social media. Thank you for your support.

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