Dementia research and the benefits of arts practices

Gary Hughes

Beacon Institute project to discuss how our knowledge and understanding of dementia are being expanded by drama, music, film and digital arts.

Health professionals, artists, film-makers, theatre practitioners, psychologists and academic researchers will get together at the University’s Canterbury campus on 30 May to explore the ways in which creative practices can offer insights into the experience of dementia and ways of interacting with those affected.

The key themes of this symposium, which is part-funded  by Kent County Council and hosted by the University’s Beacon Institute: Illuminating Arts and Science, will be person-centred care, relational environments and future prospects.

Facilitators include Professor Nicola Shaughnessy, Director of the Beacon Institute and Professor of Performance at the University’s School of Arts, and Ania Bobrowicz, a Senior Lecturer in Digital Arts at the University’s School of Engineering and Digital Arts (EDA).

The keynote speaker is Paul Camic, Professor of Psychology and Public Health, and Research Director of the Salomons Centre for Applied Psychology at Canterbury Christ Church University.

Presenters include: Katy Hirst and Rhiannon Lane, Bright Shadow Theatre Company; Tricia Fincher and Daren Kearl, Kent Library services; Arti Prashar, Spare Tyre Theatre Company; Jane Milton, film-maker and researcher, EDA; Claire Garabedian, Association of Dementia Studies at University of Worcester; Leah Thorn, poet, film-maker and artist; Luke Underdown, East Kent Hospital Charity Dementia Appeal; and Sumita Chauhan, PhD researcher, EDA.