Arts in Healing

The Cincinnati Arts Association began the Arts in Healing Initiative in 2015.  There are multiple domains in Arts in Health according to the National Organization for Arts in Health (NOAH). The Cincinnati Arts Association’s “Arts in Healing” Initiative integrates the performing and visual arts in medical and community heathcare settings and other non-traditional settings to promote community wellness and encourage our community to explore the arts as an active part of their healing and ongoing wellness.   


Arts in Health is a field dedicated to using the ‘power’ of the arts to enhance health and well-being in diverse institutional and community contexts. Comprised of many subfields and affiliated fields arts in health supports health as defined by the World Health Organization (WHO), as “a state of complete physical, mental, and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity.”[i]


CAA’s “Arts in Healing” Initiative has a team of artists and arts administrators who apply their professional knowledge and skills to ENHANCE the healing and wellness process in medical and non-traditional settings, THROUGH offering a variety of Music, Visual Arts, Movement, Theater, and Drumming arts experiences.    Our Artists in Residence PROVIDE meaningful artistic experiences with therapeutic benefit for patients, caregivers, and families, ensuring participant safety and program effectiveness, while drawing from their artistic experiences, training, and education. CAA’s Arts in Healing Initiative Artists and Administrators undergo ongoing training for the arts in healthcare field.


[i] National Organization for Arts in Health. (2017). Arts, Health and well-being in America. A white paper



  • Environmental Play enhances the environment of the medical setting experience for patients and caregivers, in a general area for group experience or moves bedside-to-bedside for an individual or family experience. 
  • Instructional Classes encourage self-expression, self-recovery and community-building through infusing an art form into the medical setting or treatment plan.  Locations vary from a classroom, bedside, or community setting.
  • Social Engagements and Interaction provide arts experiences for patients and caregivers to interact in a social setting with persons from varied backgrounds, all within the commonality of the arts.
  • Performances, Presentations and Community Dialogues educate and evoke dialogue about social or environmental issues that impact the community and or individual’s health and well-being.


  • Cincinnati VA Medical Center, where we infuse music, visual art, movement, and improve through Environmental Play, Performances, and Instructional classes.
  • Hospice of Cincinnati, where we infuse music, visual art, and movement through bedside-to-bedside, and group Environmental Play. To read about the development of this partnership: CLICK HERE
  • TriHealth Day Treatment, where we infuse instructional drumming classes.
  • TriHealth Oncology Treatment Centers, where we infuse music through Environmental Play.
  • Ohio Veterans Home (Georgetown, OH), where we infuse music and HealthRhythms Drumming through Environmental Play and Instructional classes.
  • UC Medical Center, where we infuse music and visual art through bedside-to-bedside, group Environmental Play, and performance.


The Cincinnati Arts Association and its Education and Community Programs

are supported [in part] by the Ohio Arts Council, which receives support from the State of Ohio, and the National Endowment for the Arts.



Ameritas; ArtsWave; Charles H. Dater Foundation; The Cincinnati Herald; Eleanora C.U. Alms Trust—Fifth Third Bank, Trustee; Fifth Third Bank; Fort Washington Investment Advisors, Inc.; The Hearst Foundation; Greater Cincinnati Foundation; The John A. Schroth Family Charitable Trust (Edward V Arbaugh III); Local 12 WKRC-TV; Louise Taft Semple Foundation; The Luther Charitable Trust—Narley L. Haley & Fifth Third Bank, co-trustees; Ohio Arts Council; The Otto M. Budig Family Foundation; Paolo A Modern Jeweler; P&G Fund; Pepsi; The Stillson Foundation; Summerfair Cincinnati; TriHealth; Tri-State Chevy Dealers; The Western and Southern Financial Fund; The William O. Purdy, Jr. Foundation; WOW Windowboxes