Art program helps people with dementia

Art program helps people with dementia

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Art can provide positive 'in the moment' experiences for people with dementia. Photo: AGNSW Christopher Snee

Art can provide positive 'in the moment' experiences for people with dementia. Photo: AGNSW Christopher Snee

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A newly published study on the Art Gallery of NSW's Art Access program by UTS highlights the benefits of looking at art for people with dementia.

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ART is said to speak to the soul - just ask participants in the Art Gallery of NSW Art Access program, which gives people with dementia the chance to enjoy the gallery's artwork.

The program began in 2010.
Now, a new study highlights the benefits of looking at art for people with dementia.
Gail Kenning from the University of Technology, Sydney, began the study in 2015 after being commissioned by the gallery.
She said the work provided an insight into the impact the program had on people with dementia, carers and family.
"While dementia impacts cognitive and physical functioning and memory, consciousness and emotions remain intact," Dr Kenning said.
"This means people living with dementia show affective responses and can experience the pleasure of looking at and talking about art."
The study did not focus on memory, but rather the feelings of engagement experienced.
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