Look Art Talk

Filed : Aged Care Projects, ARTS & HEALTH, PAST PROJECTS, Wellbeing projects .

Look Art Talk is a Pilot Art and Alzheimer’s program

Delivered over six weeks in 2012, Look Art Talk was the first Art and Alzheimers Program delivered in the Central West. This pilot program was an initiative funded by the Bathurst Regional Art Gallery (BRAG) and presented in partnership with Arts OutWest’s Arts and Health Program and Western NSW Local Health District.

Award winning project

In 2013 Bathurst Regional Art Gallery won a Museums & Galleries NSW IMAGiNE Award for the Look Art Talk Project.

In November 2012 Arts OutWest won, for the second year in a row, the Arts and Health Australia International Award for ‘Arts and Health in Regional and Rural Australia’. Christine McMillan accepted this award at the 2012 Arts and Health Conference in Freemantle, Western Australia, where she had also been invited to present on the Look Art Talk project.

The project

The Look Art Talk pilot project engaged, over a six week period, people with Dementia and their care-givers from the local Seymour Centre, Illumba Gardens, Macquarie Care Centre and St Catherine’s aged care facilities in Bathurst. The residents undertook tours of exhibitions at Bathurst Regional Art Gallery and cultural activities providing social inclusion and intellectual stimulation which in turn act to promote wellbeing.

The art works in Look Art Talk were specially selected from BRAG’s Permanent Collection by presenters Adrian Symes, Cate McCarthy and project coordinator Christine McMillan.

The art works in Look Art Talk were chosen to facilitate discussion between care givers, people with dementia and the presenter around comparing and contrasting of visual features and elements of design and to create links with the everyday through images that evoke story telling.

Look Art Talk is based on a program that was developed by the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA), New York in 2006. This MoMA program was later taken up by the National Gallery of Australia (NGA) in 2007 through its Art and Alzheimers Program.

The NGA subsequently provided an Art and Alzheimers Program professional development course at BRAG for Central West art and health workers in May 2011 as part of their Art and Alzheimers Outreach Program. The Look Art Talk program ran for six weeks from 13 August 2012.

Looking at and talking about works of art enables people living with Dementia to connect with the world in enriching and life-enhancing ways. A guided visit to a Gallery provides social inclusion and intellectual stimulation which in turn promotes well being and increased quality of life. – National Gallery of Australia


Christine McMillan, Arts and Health Coordinator (Wednesday-Friday)
Email: Christine.McMillan@health.nsw.gov.au Phone: 02 6330 5228

Look Art Talk was funded by Bathurst Regional Art Gallery.


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