Webinar: The Intersection of Mental Health & the Arts

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Understanding the Impact of the Arts on Mental Health

There is a strong relationship between mental health and creativity. The stereotype of the “tortured artist,” where the best creators have endured the most suffering—and mental illness—only further solidifies stigma in the community. People may be less inclined to try creative outlets to work through difficult moments and feelings. In turn, people may be afraid to express themselves as an artist out of fear of being judged, misunderstood, or stigmatized.

Engaging with art can also reduce symptoms of anxiety, depression, and stress. In addition, using art as a form of expression can help folks manage their mental and emotional well-being.

So how can we start changing the narrative around mental health and the arts? What ways can we explore how the arts can help with healing, either for ourselves or our loved ones?

In this session, Leslie Chihuly, president and chief executive officer of Chihuly Studio and co-founder of the Dale and Leslie Chihuly Foundation, and McLean Hospital’s Eriana Kirwin, OTD, highlight ways that creativity can benefit our mental state, share how to express ourselves in an emotionally helpful way, and answer questions on how we can all do our part to reduce the stigma of mental health.

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Harvard Medical School
Joseph B. Martin Conference Center
77 Avenue Louis Pasteur
Boston, MA 02115


  • Academics and policymakers
  • Tech professionals and data scientists
  • Health professionals and patient advocates
  • Entrepreneurs and investors

Leslie Chihuly

Leslie Jackson Chihuly is an American arts executive and philanthropist with a focus on democratizing access to the arts and to ensuring ongoing viability for artists and arts organizations. She is the president and chief executive officer of Chihuly Studio and Chihuly Workshop, both of which support the artistic vision of her husband and partner, Dale Chihuly. Leslie is a member of the International Women’s Forum and serves on the boards of Vassar College and Pilchuck Glass School. She chairs the Benaroya Hall Music Center Board, and serves as chair emerita of the Seattle Symphony Orchestra Board.

In 2018, Leslie was inducted into the College of Fine Arts Hall of Fame at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, in recognition of her extraordinary achievements in the arts.

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Eriana Kirwin, OTD

Eriana Kirwin, OTD, is an occupational therapist at Pathways Academy. Pathways Academy is a year-round, therapeutic day school developed to meet the social, sensory, psychological, and educational needs of children and adolescents ages 6 through 22 with autism spectrum disorders.

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Physicians and Doctoral-Level Professionals


Other Professionals and Trainees


Optional Pre-Conference Workshop



  • Monday


    April 13, 2020

  • Tuesday


    April 14, 2020

  • Wednesday


    April 15, 2020


Featured Speakers

Register by March 23. 2020




Register after March 23, 2020



Group discount (per group)




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