Independence Blue Cross #mindPHL Wellness Corner: Art and Music
Whether it’s drawing in a sketchbook at home or contributing to a collaborative, citywide mural with Philly’s renowned Mural Arts Program, art and creative expression are meditative activities with serious mental health benefits.
Find strength in creativity.
The process of creating art has the power to make a profound difference in our feelings of self-worth and our sense of belonging. When it comes to mental health, art can be transformational.
Just ask Jane Golden, Executive Director of Mural Arts Philadelphia, the nation’s largest public art program. Its Porch Light program, a collaboration with the City’s Department of Behavioral Health and Intellectual disAbility Services, focuses on achieving universal health and wellness among Philadelphians by providing opportunities to contribute to meaningful works of public art.
Porch Light murals, such as “Sanctuary,” “Wayfinders,” and “Contemplation, Clarity, Resilience,” are designed to raise awareness about mental and emotional health and inspire conversations about what constitutes community health.
“Art is not a marginal activity,” Golden says. “Art is the great multitasker. It engages us, connects us, and heals us.”
Art is good for mental health because it is a meditative process, she adds. In the context of a class or the creation of a mural, it creates a safe space and reinforces that everyone has something valuable to contribute. Art and creative expression can take many forms, from painting and drawing to playing music, writing, or weaving.
This year, everyone has an opportunity to get involved with Mural Arts through Philly Rising, a collaborative mural-making project with Philadelphia artist Nile Livingston.
You can also download the Philadelphia Mural Arts Coloring Book, the Porch Light Wellness Kit, the Everyday Healing Mindfulness Zine, or take a tour of Porch Light murals at www.PorchLightVirtualTour.org.
Sunday, June 28: Exercise
Monday, June 29: Art & Music
Learn more about the mood-boosting benefits of art and music.