A GUEST BLOG BY DR STEPHEN CLIFT

 

This guest blog by Dr Stephen Clift calls for a thorough appraisal of research about how art might contribute to health and wellbeing and argues for greater critical debate about arts and health practice and research.

 

Stephen Clift (BA, PhD, PFRSPH) is Professor Emeritus, Canterbury Christ Church University, and former Director of the Sidney De Haan Research Centre for Arts and Health.

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I visited Super Slow Way in June and July this year. This blog post reflects those visits and begins to pose a question at the heart of my role as critical friend for the Creative People and Places project.


Gatty poster (Courtesy of Claire Wellesley-Smith, 2016, http://www.clairewellesleysmith.co.uk/blog/2016/12/19/madder-root-and-gatty-red). Gatty poster (Courtesy of Claire Wellesley-Smith, 2016, http://www.clairewellesleysmith.co.uk/blog/2016/12/19/madder-root-and-gatty-red).

Gatty poster (Courtesy of Claire Wellesley-Smith, 2016, http://www.clairewellesleysmith.co.uk/blog/2016/12/19/madder-root-and-gatty-red).

How far can you go?

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I was invited to lecture at Winchester School of Art on 3rd November 2017 as part of their Talking Heads series.  This is a transcript of my lecture along with a link to my lecture slides (with notes) and a link to an edited recording of my discussion with Nick Stewart afterwards. READ MORE

I gave this presentation on 16th November 2015 at Durham University’s Participatory Research Hub.  The event aimed to explore what happens “when participatory research meets the creative sector”.  My presentation introduces dot to dot active arts, features my recent paper A View Is Always Worth It: Social Practice in Rural North East England, then reflects upon a project I collaborated on with Stevie Ronnie in 2014 – northerngame.… READ MORE

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Eavesdropping, Aidan Moesby, Vinyl wall text, 2014

I’m intensely interested in perceptions of socially engaged art: past, present and future practice and theory. My research and practice is about exploring the roots of this practice, its place in societies, its ability to open up potential spaces on a myriad of levels from social to personal, and its potential to help support a shift towards a communitarian society free from the evils of neoliberalism.… READ MORE

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Participatory arts or, more precisely, socially engaged arts practice is resurgent. Participation in the arts is, like many times in the past since the Victorian era, being promoted as a panacea for many of the issues facing our communities.  New initiatives such as ArtWorks , Cultural Value Project and Participation & Engagement in the Arts seek a sea change in UK cultural and educational settings. … READ MORE