A Center for Arts and Health in Rhode Island

September 9 2020

In 2016, a partnership between Rhode Island Department of Health (RIDOH) and Rhode Island State Council on the Arts (RISCA) was formed to support the development of a State Arts and Health Plan — “a public health roadmap for advancing the integration of arts and health for the state. As part of this process, an interdisciplinary team of arts and health practitioners including researchers, artists, and clinicians, formed the Rhode Island Arts and Health Advisory Group.”  The Advisory Group outlined a set of strategies to advance the integration of the arts, creative arts therapies, and health and well-being through a set of policy, practice, and research recommendations. In 2019, the Rhode Island State Arts and Health Advisory Group released the Rhode Island Arts and Health State Plan and began implementation through the creation of the Rhode Island Arts and Health Network and its Steering Committee.  



Beginning in January 2020, RISCA and RIDOH partnered with designers from the Center for Complexity (CfC) at Rhode Island School of Design (RISD) to develop the next stages of the plan, particularly the concept of a “Center” for arts and health. This collaboration included 5 workshops with members of the RI Arts and Health Network Steering Committee and a 6-day strategic design studio with practitioners working across the sectors of arts and health in Rhode Island. 




The studio participants developed recommendations to help conceptualize how best to advance the integration of the arts, art-therapies, and health and wellbeing in Rhode Island. The work will continue to evolve in new directions as further developments of the effort are advanced. 




Read the studio report for recommendations and studio process.