Arts and Health Network

Led by Rhode Island State Council on the Arts, Rhode Island Department of Health and community partners, the Arts and Health Network highlights the important role the arts can play in individual and community health. Collectively, we work toward fully integrating arts and arts-based therapies into health and community settings through innovative and sustainable policy, practice and research recommendations.

Tell us about your interest in Arts and Health, fill out the AH Interest Form here.

In 2016, RISCA partnered with the Rhode Island Department of Health and Dr. Stacey Springs from the Brown School of Public Health to investigate how the arts can positively impact health, and work in concert with clinical practices. An arts and health planning process guided by a 25-member community advisory group, and Dr. Springs, convened to look at current evidence and gaps in evidence in the field of arts and health. The result was the Rhode Island State Plan for Arts and Health, and the formation of the RI Arts and Health Network with the two state agencies serving as the Network hub. A community-based Arts and Health Steering Committee was formed to help guide the work going forward.  The Arts and Health Initiative key components include:

  • Arts and Health Grants: In 2017, RISCA created a new Health grant category (Project Grants in Healthcare) to support the Arts and Health initiative. In 2022, the grant was restructured to support arts engaged projects in health and/or community spaces with an intended health or public health benefit. The new Arts and Health Grants program opened in 2023.
  • RI State Arts and Health Plan (2019): View or Download State Plan
  • Evidence Research Map (2019): Prepared by Dr. Stacey Springs, Center for Evidence Synthesis in Health Brown University School of Public Health, in collaboration with the community Arts and Health Advisory Group.
  • Design Sprint with the RISD Center for Complexity explored what a Center for Arts and Health might look like in Rhode Island (2020) – View or Download RIAHN Report
  • Artist at the Table (2020): An online course, facilitated by Dr. Stacey Springs, to support artists working in arts and health to better understand research, and how it might serve their own work to build the field.

In Conversation: Arts and Health
Presented by the Arts and Health Network

A conversation series with artists, creatives, health professionals, and other innovators who believe in the power of the arts to engage communities and improve well-being. Each event is a presentation, followed by open conversation and networking or a field trip into the community. Virtual and in person events. Events are free, but registration is required.

Link to past and present conversations: Arts and Health Eventbrite Collection

Arts and Health Artist in Residence

The Arts and Health Artist in Residence (AIR) is a program born of the partnership between the RI State Council on the Arts (RISCA) and the RI Department of Health (RIDOH). The goal of the project and the mission of the partnership is to advance the integration of the arts, art-therapy, and health and well-being in our state. The Artist in Residence program helps to achieve this mission by embedding local artists within state health and human services agencies to help address public, clinical, and behavioral health problems through the introduction of the creative and innovative problem solving that artist encounter in their every day.

Applications are currently closed.

2019 Artist in Residence:  Jazzmen Lee-Johnson

@ RI Department of Health (RIDOH)
Community Partners

  • Refugee Health Program
  • Southside Community Land Trust
  • Asthma Control

2022 Artist in Residence:  Melody Gamba

@ Executive Offices of the Health and Human Services (EOHHS)

Community Partners

  • Parent Support Network of RI
  • Dorcas International