Arts in health promotion: a comparative overview of two health arts alliances

  • Helen Chambers


Arts in health care is often associated with hospital arts, theatre in health education or arts therapies. Increasingly, however, a variety of other health promoting roles are being developed by artists and health workers operating in the community. This chapter identifies two health promotion initiatives that demonstrate a range of health promoting functions enabled through an alliance of arts and health and implemented using contrasting models of health promotion. One is led by a local authority arts department and the other by a specialist health promotion agency. A rationale and description for the use of the arts in health promotion is provided, and discussion focuses upon the factors that influence the development of the alliance. Comment will be made upon the extent to which outcomes have been enhanced or impeded through partnership-working. Consideration will be given to the role of specialist health promotion officers in enabling health arts alliances.


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. Ashton, J. and Seymour, H. (1988) The New Public Health. Milton Keynes: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
  2. Burns, J.M. (1978) Leadership. New York: HarperCollins.Google Scholar
  3. Chambers, H. (1995) The role of community arts in primary care health promotion: creating connections and compassion. Unpublished MSc in Health Promotion, Bath College of Higher Education.Google Scholar
  4. Department of Health (1992) The Health of the Nation. London: HMSO.Google Scholar
  5. Funnell, R., Oldfield, K. and Speller, V. (1995) Towards Healthier Alliances. London: Health Education Authority.Google Scholar
  6. King’s Fund (1995) Report of an Evaluation Study — Services for Elderly People. London/Oxford: Dalley Peretz Brown.Google Scholar
  7. Powell, M. (1992) Health Gain ‘92. Norwich: East Anglia Regional Health Authority.Google Scholar
  8. Rigler, N. and Gardner, K. (1994) A celebration of health through art. In Heritage, Z. (ed.) Community Participation in Primary Care. London: Royal College of General Practitioners.Google Scholar
  9. Roberts, S. (1993) Arts in Healthcare Initiative, Evaluation Report. Lincoln: Art Service.Google Scholar
  10. Stanger, G. (1995) The Arts in Health Care in Northern Arts Region. Newcastle: Northern Arts.Google Scholar
  11. Talerico, C.J. (1986) The expressive arts and creativity as a form of therapeutic experience in the field of mental health. American Psychological Association journal of Creative Behavior 20(4): 229–47.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Vygotsky, L. (1971) The psychology of Art. In Ross, S. (ed.) Art and Its Significance, 3rd edn. New York: State University of New York Press.Google Scholar
  13. Wilson, M. (1977) Health is for People. London: Darton, Longman & Todd.Google Scholar
  14. World Health Organization and United Nations Children’s Fund (1978) Primary Health Care: the Alma Ata Conference. Geneva: WHO/UNICEF.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Helen Chambers 1998

Authors and Affiliations

  • Helen Chambers

There are no affiliations available

Personalised recommendations