The small charity the Art Room, based in Oxford and London, was chosen as one of four Kate Middleton patron charities earlier this year.
The charity is hosting the Alexandra Reinhardt Memorial Award (ARMA) until 2013, worth £10,000 this year. The project is in memory of Alexandra Reinhardt, the deaf artist who died in 2004 following illness with a rare blood disorder. The award provides funds for a 12 week artist-in-residence project culminating in the creation of a public art installation.
The 2012 ARMA winning artist will run 12 full day workshops held weekly, working with children aged seven to eleven. The residency will be from April to July.
The artist is expected to produce a finished artwork for permanent public display at the Robert Blair School in London. For 2012 the organisers are looking for a 3D installation for the school.
The Art Room uses art to provide therapy for children and young people facing challenges and has reported some fantastic results. The Kate Middleton charity now works with over 12 schools, providing art therapy to hundreds of children each week.
Art works have been shown to enliven an environment, generate healing and create interest and inspiration…
In fact, there is a longstanding connection between art and healing recognised by the ancient Greeks and in Britain the introduction of art into hospital environments was introduced for this purpose during the Victorian period.
This trend which aims to create a more beneficial environment for recovery and recuperation has also been continued in recent times via the ARMA award that has previously been run in NHS hospitals around the country in conjunction with the charity, Paintings in Hospitals.
The charity Paintings in Hospitals has recently benefited from a partnership with the Arts Council Collection to introduce works from its collection into healthcare facilities.
Works by contemporary artists including Catherine Yass, Joe Tilson, Ian Hamilton-Finlay and Helen Chadwick will soon be made available...
The benefits of such projects are not just based on intuitive and anecdotal evidence but backed up by research which includes the 2007 Department of Health and Arts Council England publication: A Prospectus for Arts and Health, that acknowledged the arts have an important role in improving health and wellbeing...