Monday, 1 January 2018

Culture & the Arts as Social Determinants of Health

A Happy New Year to you
...First things first - I hope that 2018 will be positive in so many ways for you personally, and to our arts and health community.

Vic McEwan
Just two things for this New Years Day posting - one, there are just a handful of places for the free event at HOME on the 23rd January. This is an opportunity to hear from Vic McEwan about his time in residence at Alder Hey Children's Hospital and the superb Harmonic Oscillator. I'll be launching a book about his work and sharing some of my observations about contemporary social arts practice. So click HERE if you want to come along.

I am very excited to announce that the brilliant Maxine Peake will be contributing to our follow-up event to the Creative Health launch which we held at the Manchester School of Art in July. Why Maxine Peake? When I told her about our field of research and practice, and our belief that culture and the arts in all their forms, should not be the sole preserve of the great and the good - she committed herself to being part of this agenda. She is a dynamic actor, with deep integrity and I'm thrilled that she wants to be a part of our bigger cultural conversation. So it's an exciting and evolving agenda and you'll see some detail below, including a link to eventbrite to express your interest in attending. I've had to do it this way, so as to prioritise people from our region, and ensure a diverse range of people on the day. It will be a busy event, so register promptly.

Finally, we are not interested in the grandiose gestures of self-styled venture philanthropists hell-bent on the standardisation and packaging up of cultural activity into an insipid blanket prescription for all life’s ills, but beginning a more difficult and nuanced exploration around inequalities, social justice and just how culture and the arts might be a significant factor in healthy lives well lived. So below are some brief details
, with more on eventbrite.

Culture & the Arts as Social Determinants of Health
With special guests Maxine Peake and Dr Rebecca Gordon-Nesbitt
This is a free North West Arts & Health Network event exploring cultural participation as a social determinant of individual and communal health.

When: 6th February between 11:00 - 15:00
Where: Manchester School of Art
Register interest HERE

In 2017 Arts for Health hosted the public launch of Creative Health - the report of the All Party Parliamentary Group on Arts, Health & Wellbeing - at the Manchester School of Art. The report was researched and written by former Arts for Health Research Associate, Dr Rebecca Gordon-Nesbitt who will be unpicking elements of the report which focused down on the factors that influence our health. These are the social determinants of health.

We are thrilled that the actor Maxine Peake will frame our event and thinking around experiences of the arts in relation to inequalities and social justice, encouraging us to think more widely about the potency of culture and the arts to transform lives and instigate social change.

In 2019 Manchester will host the World Healthcare Congress (Europe) and arts and health will be a core strand of these two large-scale international events, which will be led by Clive Parkinson and Esme Ward. We hope that this event on 6th February might begin to inform elements of these conference strands, reinforcing the place and potential of culture and the arts as a social movement that influences health and social change. 

This event on the 6th February additionally aims: 

To inspire and develop new ways of thinking and working together
To interrogate the recommendations made in Creative Health 
To galvanise our community
You have three weeks to express your interest in attending this event and places will be allocated on Tuesday 30th January. The agenda is subject to change and other contributions to the event are being planned. 

Priority will be given to people with lived experience and those whose work is focused on arts and health activity, research and development in the North West of England.


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