Detroit Institute of Arts partners with Oakwood on pilot Art video program

The Detroit Institute of Arts (DIA) has partnered with Oakwood Healthcare to create a video of artworks designed to enhance the healing environment for patients and to alleviate the stressful experience of a hospital stay. The video is the first of its kind and will be available in patients’ rooms. It will be available in May for patients at Oakwood Southshore Medical Center (OSMC) in Trenton.

The DIA, in consultation with OakwoodArts for the Spirit staff, produced the 18-minute video featuring images of the museum’s architecturally stunning spaces and detailed explorations of artworks, accompanied by serene piano music and inspiring quotes. The paintings, photographs, sculptures and other works of art feature images of landscapes, waterscapes, flowers and portraits of people in relaxed surroundings.

“The DIA is delighted to partner with Oakwood on this video that will benefit patients through the inspiring power of art,” said Graham W.J. Beal, DIA director. “Studies have shown the positive effect the arts have on those suffering from illnesses and injuries, and we applaud Oakwood for recognizing how art can assist their patients in the healing process.”

The video is designed primarily to serve patients, many of whom may be experiencing varying degrees of fear, distress and physical pain. The video features slow, focused views of carefully selected works of art, chosen for imagery that is calming, meditative and uplifting, meant to enliven the spirit and soothe the mind.

Representatives at Oakwood Healthcare proposed the project and worked with museum staff to develop a prototype, which will be evaluated based on responses from patients. Edits, if necessary, will be made based on the evaluation results and the video will be available at OSMC starting in May. Long-term plans are to offer the video on patient television systems at all four Oakwood hospitals and post acute care sites.

“We’ve long believed in the healing power of art at Oakwood and we are thrilled the DIA embraces our vision and passion for this project,” said Brian M. Connolly, president and CEO, Oakwood Healthcare. “For centuries, healers have fostered the idea that music, art and poetry have profound healing effects. The arts are an integral part of our commitment to provide comprehensive health care. The arts stimulate hope and that’s why we continue to build an environment that helps heal the human spirit as well as the body.”

Oakwood Healthcare and the Oakwood Healthcare Foundation enjoy a productive relationship with the DIA. Oakwood Arts for the Spirit Program exists because of generous gifts from the Masco Corporation Foundation and the Richard and Jane Manoogian Family Foundation; both are long-serving, sustaining donors of the museum. John Lewis, current Oakwood Corporate board chair, is also a DIA board member. The museum was the site for the 2010, 2011 and 2012 Oakwood Healthcare Foundation’s Wine for the Spirit event.

The Oakwood partnership is just one of a growing number of initiatives in the DIA’s Healing Arts Program. Others include a partnership with the Alzheimer’s Association of Michigan, bedside art-making at Children’s Hospital of Michigan in Detroit, and several specialized programs to serve special-needs audiences. For more information on these programs, visit www.dia.org.

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