How art can heal the heart
A new book co-authored by Mary Rockwood Lane guides readers on a creative journey to health
Published: Saturday, February 1, 2014 at 6:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Wednesday, January 29, 2014 at 4:14 p.m.
‘Tis the season of love.
Where to find it:
Healing with the Arts: A 12-Week Program to Heal Yourself and Your Community, is available locally at the Harn Museum of Art, 3259 Hull Road, Gainesville, and online at www.amazon.com.
And what better way to express love than to tap into the heart’s intelligence and let it speak through art?
Mary Rockwood Lane, an associate professor at the University of Florida College of Nursing, says art has a powerful way to heal and connect people.
“With Valentine’s Day coming up and our desire to connect with the beloved, when we share ourselves in a creative way through art, music, dance and song, it’s as if we can offer ourselves as a gift in which no gift we can buy can do,” says Lane, mother of three adult children and wife to orthopedic surgeon Dr. Timothy Lane. “Let your heart lead the way. Let your heart tell its story. Let your heart sing its song. Talking about it doesn’t give it the fullness of expression, but the arts can really do that.”
Lane is what you may call an expert in this field.
She has a bachelor’s degree and Ph.D. in nursing from UF. She co-founded with Dr. John Graham-Pole the Shands Arts in Medicine program at UF after creating the first artist-in-residence program in the country in 1991. The Arts in Medicine program, which has served as a model for programs around the country, incorporates art, music, poetry, theater and dance into nursing care. She led and developed that program for more than 15 years and now teaches creativity and spirituality in health care.
Most recently she has co-authored a book, Healing with the Arts: A 12-Week Program to Heal Yourself and Your Community, that guides readers to use art projects – visual, dance, writing and music – as well as spiritual practices, to heal physical, emotional, mental and spiritual ailments.
Her co-author, Dr. Michael Samuels, has written 22 books, is founder and director of Art as a Healing Force, and teaches Art and Healing at San Francisco State University.
Lane, who moved to Gainesville when she was in middle school, says a piece of art created by your own instinct is one of the best gifts of all.