Why create an Arts in Health program for Mother’s Day? According to the CDC, women caregivers have a greater risk for poor physical and mental health, including depression and anxiety. Mothers have held such heavy weights this last year: from grieving losses to taking on more responsibilities such as managing work from home, additional hours for childcare, homeschooling, at-home nursing, coaching, offering tech support and much more. The presence of art and music in healthcare enhances the overall experience. It allows us to remove ourselves from whatever we’re battling to be motivated and inspired.
Diverse partners joined together in Chattanooga, Tennessee, to inspire and support women and female artists for Mother’s Day and, most importantly, promote health and well-being through the Arts. The program included artwork by Alex Paul Loza, music by Shane Morrow and a presentation of new work from poet Erika Roberts in partnership with multiple organizations that will resonate with communities across the country.
The Arts have existed since folks drew on cave walls and I suspect that there was some humming and harmony back in the day before song writing was a thing. Communal dancing around fires at night was an aboriginal celebration in humanity’s history. Artistic expression by individuals and groups seems to be embedded in our DNA. And one of the things that saved me when I first came to America as a kid, was this country’s passion for Arts and Culture.
My cousin Sam and I escaped our Harvard dorms and were about to experience neurocommunication as we headed out to a Ravi Shankar concert in a small neighborhood theater in Boston. I was just seventeen, you know what I mean, and it was frostbite territory standing at the bus stop in Cambridge, Mass. Freezing almost took my mind off of being homesick for my family back in New York. Overcome with loneliness, I needed an attitude adjustment and Sam insisted on some music therapy. He thought that classical sitar music from India would distract and soothe – reboot my brain. I wondered why we were the only Harvard students who ‘d come to hear this relatively unknown musician from India. But it was the sixties and Shankar hadn’t yet been labeled by The Beatles’ George Harrison as “the godfather of world music”.
Podcast interview with Jan Levine Thal, Artistic Director, Kathie Rasmussen Women’s Theatre (Krass), Madison, WI. Krass supports women playwrights and directors but welcomes people of all genders in all other aspects of its work. In this interview she discusses why women’s theater is the same and different from all other theater. See the website for current and past work:krasstheatre.com
To suffer for one’s art has long been taken for granted as the only way to succeed. Monetary gain for any kind of artistic or creative work can to some be outrageous and unforgivable. Artists who demand high prices are frowned upon for being too money orientated as if they are sullying the arts profession by prostituting their own style and talents. Art for money is not considered to be the acceptable primary directive as we should all be purists in heart and mind manifesting our art for the satisfaction of being able to express ourselves through our chosen medium.
Language and culture are inter-woven in our normal lives, but the depth or the centre point, from where all the imagination and creativity originates in the form of art and literature, is obscured in the hidden layers of the unconscious self. It is from the deepest layer of the self where all the diversity of life springs. At the same time, it is the focal point, or an ultimate abode, for diverseness becoming oneness of being.