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Art & health



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Good art can provoke, explore, or simply entrance. But can it also be good for your health? Can healthy (or healing) art be good art? Does it matter?

Art can be a powerful prescription for people of all ages, from troubled youth to the ailing elderly. We’ll look at whether art can be healthy by stealth, where the best bang for the buck lies, and how we make art for health alluring, rather than earnest.

Host Jerril Rechter, CEO of VicHealth will appear with Janet Morrison, CEO of Independent Age, Polyglot Theatre’s Sue Giles, and clown doctor Clare Bartholomew.


Clare Bartholomew

Clare Bartholomew has been performing, writing and producing new work in Australia and overseas for 17 years. She teaches clown master classes, has been a clown doctor working in children’s wards for 15 years. She assists in training and development of clown doctors nationally, and in 2014 complet... Read more

Sue Giles

Sue Giles has been artistic director of children’s contemporary arts company Polyglot Theatre since 2000. With the company she has created participatory works ranging from large-scale play spaces to theatre created with children at the centre of the art and art making. Polyglot’s work is recogni... Read more

Janet Morrison

Janet Morrison is Chief Executive of Independent Age – a national advice, befriending and advocacy organisation in the UK for older people in need – which campaigns on issues affecting independence in old age, including health and social care, isolation and loneliness. Janet is also Chai... Read more

Mike White

Mike White is an international authority on community arts and health practice and research. He is Director of Strategic Development at the Australian Centre for Arts and Health, the national not for profit peak body for the arts and health sector. Based in the UK, Mike is the author of Arts Develop... Read more

Jerril Rechter

Jerril Rechter is the CEO of VicHealth. Her expertise lies in health promotion, leadership, and the potential of innovation to improve health and wellbeing for everyone. She is a World Health Organization Advisor, a board member of the International Network of Health Promotion Foundations and has se... Read more


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176 Little Lonsdale Street Melbourne Victoria 3000

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The Wheeler Centre acknowledges the Wurundjeri Woi Wurrung people of the Kulin Nation as the Traditional Owners of the land on which the Centre stands. We acknowledge and pay our respects to all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and their Elders, past and present, as the custodians of the world’s oldest continuous living culture.