Sundogs and Sunflowers

An Art for Life Program Guide for Creative Aging, Health, and Wellness

Troyd A. Geist

Based on the NDCA’s nationally-recognized Art for Life Program, it represents a five-year effort to develop a program guide with associated materials to increase capacity and bring together a community’s folk and fine artists, local arts agency, a participating elder care facility, and a partnering school to conduct creative aging, health, and wellness work. The Art for Life Program seeks to improve the emotional and physical lives of elders in care facilities with intensive art and artist interaction.

The toolkit consists of two publications, a guided imagery CD set with user manual, and dozens of online articles and activity plans developed by folk artists, artists, folklorists, physicians, nurses, gerontologists, speech therapists, and music therapists. These materials seek to connect the dots, provide examples across the arts and sciences, and contextualize creative aging, health, and wellness efforts, especially within a framework of folk culture and folk traditions.

Source: Grantmakers in the Arts announcement