You are on page 1of 7

A Publication of A Superior Choice, LLC

The Power of Art


ON THOSE WITH MEMORY LOSS DUE TO
DEMENTIA & ALZHEIMERS
Art speaks.

We listen.

We feel.

We are impacted.

TABLE OF CONTENTS

1. Art as Therapy: Memory, Engagement, and


Conversation
2. Museum Programs
3. Books & Resources

Art may improve quality of life for patients and


caregivers, even if temporarily. Anything that
brings respite and joy into their lives is worth a
shot while we are chasing down the science.
- Jessica Shugart

Call us at
404-257-1608

A Superior Choice, LLC 2015

Art as Therapy
Memory, Engagement, and Conversation
By Angela Downs, 02/18/15
Thepurposeofartis,arguably,toelicitaresponsefrom
theviewerorlistener. Thatresponsemaybeawe,
amusement,anger,laughter,tears,orgrief andbecause
ofitssubjectivenature,thoseresponsesmaycomefrom
differentpeopleallviewingorlisteningtothesamework
ofart. Artmovesus;ittouchesusinplacesthatwekeep
hiddenandburied;itopensavenuesofpainorjoythat
wemightnothaveevenknownwepossessedbytapping
intomemoriesandpasthurtsortriumphs. Most
importantly,itmakesusfeel something.
Artspeaks. Andwelisten.
Tiberius;Roman;ca.14AD
CarlosCollectionofAncientArt

Itsnosurprise,then,thatartisbeingusedtohelp
peopledealingwithmildmemorylossandcognitive
declineduetodementiaandAlzheimers. Wefirstsaw

thisintheNewYorkMuseumofModernArtsMeetMeprogram,whichtookplacefrom2007to2014. The
initiativewasfundedbytheMetLifeFoundationandfocusedoneducationandtrainingforartsandhealth
professionalstomakeartmoreaccessibletopeoplewithdementia.
InAtlanta,theMichaelC.CarlosMuseumatEmoryUniversityhascreatedaprogram,modeledafterMOMAs,
calledMuseumMoments. Itisadocentledtourdesignedforpeoplewithmildcognitiveissuesor
dementia. Researchhasfoundthatpeopledealingwiththeearlystagesofdementiaarestillabletoconnect
withartandmusic,soitwasanaturalprogressiontothedevelopmentofprogramsmeanttohelpthese
individualsdojustthat. Thetoursarefree,andareledbyadocentataslowpaceandwithlimitedscope,so
thatparticipantsarenotoverwhelmedbytoomuchsensoryinformation. Theyarealsogearedtoinitiate
conversation. Thedocentsaretrainedtorecognizesignsofinterestintheparticipantsandwillaskquestionsto
promptmemoriesorthoughts.
ProgramdirectorJulieGreensaid,Onegentleman,onreflectingonasculptureintheGreekandRoman
galleries,talkedaboutfoodhismother(whowasaGreekimmigrant)hadpreparedforhimasachild. Hiswife
commentedthattheyhadbeenmarriedfor60yearsandshehadneverheardthatstory. Ms.Greenalsotold
usthatthetourisabouttakingtime,takingcare,andinvitingreflection,andthatitisalwaysaheartwarming
experience. TourscanbearrangedbycallingMs.Greenat404.727.2363oremailingherat
jgree09@emory.edu.

Call us at
404-257-1608

A Superior Choice, LLC 2015

Special Programs at Museums


In the Atlanta Area
MuseumMoments
InAtlanta,theMichaelC.CarlosMuseumatEmoryUniversityhascreatedaprogram,modeled
afterMOMAs,calledMuseumMoments. Itisadocentledtourdesignedforpeoplewithmild
cognitiveissuesordementia. Thetoursarefree,andareledbyadocentataslowpaceand
withlimitedscope,sothatparticipantsarenotoverwhelmedbytoomuchsensory
information. Theyarealsogearedtoinitiateconversation. Thedocentsaretrainedtorecognize
signsofinterestintheparticipantsandwillaskquestionstopromptmemoriesorthoughts.
TourscanbearrangedbycallingMs.Greenat404.727.2363oremailingherat
jgree09@emory.edu.

ConnectionswithArt
TheMorris MuseumofArtinAugustaoffersaprogramcalledConnectionswithArt. Itwas
thefirstsuchprograminthestate,andisspeciallydesignedforindividualswithAlzheimersora
relateddementiaandtheircaregivers. Itisafreeprogram,availablebyrequest;contact
education@themorris.org orcall706.828.3867formoreinformation.

Rendezvous
AttheBoothWesternArtMuseum inCartersville,GA,theprogramiscalledRendezvous. Itis
offeredonthesecondMondayofeachmonthfrom10:00 11:30am,whenthemuseumis
closedtothepublic,allowingarelaxedatmosphereforvisitorswithAlzheimersordementia,
andtheircaregivers. Thenonthreateningnatureofthetouralsoprovidesasafespacefor
conversationinsmallgroupswhileviewingtheartondisplayatthemuseum. Afterthetour,
visitorsworkwiththeirfamiliesorcaregiversoninteractiveartactivities. Advancedregistration
isrequiredbycontactingvolunteercoordinatorMarciaDillardat770.387.3849.

Call us at
404-257-1608

A Superior Choice, LLC 2015

Books & Resources


Book
Thisbookconveysvaluablescientificinformationonhow
Alzheimer'sandotherdementiasaffectthebrainandhowart
andcreativetherapiesareoftenabletobypassthelimitations
imposedbythosechangesandreachareasofemotion,
creativity,andexpression.Inthisstoryabouttheremarkable
transformationundergonebyHilgos,awomanwith
Alzheimer's,herfamily,friends,caregivers,anddoctorsreflect
ontheroleofartinhelpingherregainherselfesteemand
connectonceagainwiththosesheloves.Includeschapters
writtenbyRobertButler,MD,founderoftheNationalInstitute
onAging,GeneCohen,PhD,founderoftheCenteronAging,
HealthandHumanitiesatGeorgeWashingtonUniversity,and
theindividualartstudentswhoworkedwithHilgos.Filledwith
practicalinformationandresourcesforpeoplewith
Alzheimer'sandtheircaregivers.Illustratedwiththedelightful
paintingsandsculpturesthatHilgoscreatedbeforeandafter
developingAlzheimer's.

Foundation
ARTZ:ArtistsforAlzheimer's isa501(c)(3)initiativeofthe
I'mStillHereFoundation,foundedin2002,withthepurpose
ofenhancingtheculturalandcreativelifeofpeoplelivingwith
Alzheimersdisease.ARTZmission:Toenrichtheculturallife
ofpeoplelivingwithAlzheimersdisease,enablethemto
expresstheirinnerselves,andlessenthestigmathatoften
accompaniesadiagnosis.http://www.imstillhere.org/artz

ResearchPapers
ChancellorB,DuncanA,ChatterjeeA.ArtTherapyforAlzheimer'sDiseaseandOtherDementias.J
AlzheimersDis.2013Oct10; PubMed.
BeardR.ArtTherapiesandDementiaCare:ASystematicReview. Dementia,TheInternationalJournalof
SocialResearchandPractice.September2012.
HattoriH,HattoriC,HokaoC,MizushimaK,MaseT.Controlledstudyonthecognitiveandpsychological
effectofcoloringanddrawinginmildAlzheimer'sdiseasepatients.GeriatrGerontolInt.2011
Oct;11(4):4317.PubMed.

Call us at
404-257-1608

A Superior Choice, LLC 2015

AtASuperiorChoice,wearecommittedtoprovidingyouwith
resources,education,andinformationtomakeyourlife andthe
livesofthoseyoucarefor better.
Programsliketheonesoutlinedhereareinstrumentalinhelping
Alzheimersanddementiapatientsremainconnectedforaslongas
possible. Researchhasshown thatdefinitemental,social,and
emotionalprogressispossiblewithexposuretoartrelated
activities.
Sharewithusyourstoriesonhowarthasimpactedthelivesof
yourlovedoneswithAlzheimersandrelateddementia!

ShareonFacebookatwww.facebook.com/ASuperiorChoice
Shareonourblogatwww.ASCCaresBlog.com
Sharethroughourwebsiteatwww.ASCCares.com/contactus.html

Call us at
404-257-1608

A Superior Choice, LLC 2015

Visit us online.

ASC Website
ASCCares.com

ASC Blog
ASCCaresBlog.com

WeTouchLives

HomeCare

withhelp,healing,
andhope.

designedwithyouand
yourlovedonesin
mind.

Thiscontentisnotintendedtoreplacetheadviceandcouncilofyourattendingphysicians.
Itisofferedtostimulatemeaningfulconversationandfurtherresearch.

Call us at
404-257-1608

A Superior Choice, LLC 2015