“Live Well” Art Therapy and the Ulster Museum’s Collections

Museum Seminar Photo .jpg

Live Well Sharing Practice Seminar
Cultra Manor, Ulster Folk Museum
National Museums NI and Belfast School of Art, MSc Art Therapy

On May 15, 2019 MSc Art Therapy trainees Mary Mawhinney and Bridget Nugent delivered workshops exploring how museum collections aid in the promotion of well being for older people. Mary facilitated a workshop in response to an artwork by LS Lowry and Bridget focussed on the patchwork quilt collection at the Ulster American Folk Park. Their presentations examined how museums play a vital role in promoting mental health through inspiring creativity, self efficacy, engagement, and life long learning. The Live Well seminar offered an opportunity for collaboration between the MSc Art Therapy course and the Live Well programme which works to alleviate social isolation and loneliness faced by older people. 

Pictured from left to right are Dr. David Tosh (Research Coordinator, National Museums NI), Colleen Watters (Head of Learning and Partnership, Ulster Museum),
Susan Duncan (Live Well Facilitator), Jane Wiliams (Learning Officer, National Museums NI), Sharon McKibbin (Live Well Facilitator), Mary Mawhinney (MSc Art Therapy Trainee) and Bridget Nugent (MSc Art Therapy Trainee).

mary ulster museum

Photo: Mary Mawhinney and the LS Lowry inspired figures produced in her workshop at the Live Well Sharing Practice Seminar.

_48221336_museum_466

Art Therapy in Museums Articles

“Museums as Spaces for Well Being: A Second Report from the National Alliance for Museums, Health and Wellbeing”

https://museumsandwellbeingalliance.files.wordpress.com/2018/04/museums-as-spaces-for-wellbeing-a-second-report.pdf

“Art Psychotherapy: How Museums are Helping People Explore their Mental Health.” Link below:

https://www.independent.co.uk/news/health/url-art-therapy-museum-mental-health-depression-treatment-nhs-a8780731.html

The two articles below can be accessed and read in full if you are a member of BAAT. Log-in as a member and then go to Publications/IJAT-Inscape.

“Tapping into Museums for Art Psychotherapy: An Evaluation of a Pilot Group for Young Adults” by Ali Coles

https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/17454832.2017.1380056

“Flexing the Frame: Therapist Experiences of Museum-Based Group Art Psychotherapy for Adults with Complex Mental Health Difficulties” by Ali Coles, Fiona Harrison, and Saira Todd

https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/17454832.2018.1564346

Please also refer to the link below which lists a variety of articles and resources related to art therapy in galleries and museums.

http://www.atmag.org/wp-content/uploads/2013/12/atmag-biblio0915.pdf

http://www.atmag.org/?page_id=41

 

On Wednesday, February 13th we will take a trip to Ulster Museum to meet Jane Williams and Coleen Watters who develop learning, and engagement programmes at the museum.

Students will be given an introductory talk by Colleen Watters and then Jane Williams will be assigning an activity where students will work in small groups (3 groups of 5, and one group of 4) to develop a creative and engaging activity for a specific visitors group. You will have time to prepare your ideas and then each group will present their project proposal over the course of 5 minutes to Jane and Colleen who will then offer feedback.

UU Art Therapy Students at the Ulster Museum

UM 1

UM 2

UM 10

Wednesday 13 February, 14.30 – 16.45

AGENDA

14.30 Meet in the reception area

14.30 – 15.15

UM 3

UM 5

Colleen Waters, Head of Learning Ulster Museum

* Looking at paintings

* Discover Art & creative responses

15.15- 16.00

Task: Collections & Creativity (see below for explanation)

Students may wish to use the cafe to write up their ideas.

16.00 – 16.45

Jane Williams, Learning Officer (Treasure House & Live Well)

Discover Nature Classroom (entered through Discover Nature)

* Four groups each pitch their ideas

* 5 minute pitch & 5 minutes for questions & discussion

Collections and Creativity Task Explained 

* Research and development : 15.15- 16.00 (Galleries/café)

* Presentation: 16.00 – 16.45 (Discover Nature classroom)

Think of a particular group

Assume you have a group of 12 -15, aged 50 – 85. Are they men, women, mixed?

Assume members of the group are affected by one or more of the following: arthritis, visual impairment, stroke, mental health issues, dementia, learning disabilities.

Time & place

The group has 60 – 120 minutes in the museum from arrival to departure.

Your venue will be Discover Art (tables, chairs, no sinks.)

Collections

Choose an object or group of objects that you can interest the group in.

How will you get them engaged – questions, stories, looking, talking?

How will your creative activity link to your object(s)?

Creativity

Talk through the steps of your activity and what the group would make.

How would you accommodate different abilities or disabilities?

Your pitch

* Aim to spend 5 minutes pitching your idea

* Allow 5 minutes for questions & discussion

UM 6

UM 7

UM 8

Suggestion from Pamela:

If students living nearby Belfast have time to visit the Ulster Museum ahead of our class on February 13th this will give you the opportunity to become familiar with the museum’s collections before your project preparation on-site. Perhaps small groups could be pre-determined before February 13th, so that photos of collections could be shared between students living in/near Belfast and those living outside Belfast so as to inspire your initial ideas for completing the Collections and Creativity task.

Art Therapy in Museums Articles

The two articles below can be accessed and read in full if you are a member of BAAT. Log-in as a member and then go to Publications/IJAT-Inscape.

“Tapping into Museums for Art Psychotherapy: An Evaluation of a Pilot Group for Young Adults” by Ali Coles

https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/17454832.2017.1380056

“Flexing the Frame: Therapist Experiences of Museum-Based Group Art Psychotherapy for Adults with Complex Mental Health Difficulties” by Ali Coles, Fiona Harrison, and Saira Todd

https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/17454832.2018.1564346

Please also refer to the link below which lists a variety of articles and resources related to art therapy in galleries and museums.

http://www.atmag.org/wp-content/uploads/2013/12/atmag-biblio0915.pdf

http://www.atmag.org/?page_id=41