Arts & Health and Wellbeing

Arts and humanities research during the COVID-19 pandemic has addressed issues of direct relevance for the support of individual, social and community health, mental health and wellbeing

Findings show that during the pandemic, the social care sector and the NHS have been able to access, benefit and learn from community assets and resources, including those offered through arts and cultural organisations and charities, and those existing within the natural and built environment

Arts-based support provided through digital or hybrid activities (including social prescribing) has led to increased feelings of connection for some, despite social and physical isolation. Adaptation and continued provision of support has resulted in processes of recovery and renewal being successfully supported for people using health and social care services, including the most clinically vulnerable and disadvantaged. The move to digital has, however, exposed multiple barriers to digital engagement and demonstrated a need for targeted skills development for those delivering and accessing services. 

Arts and cultural activity has facilitated community-building in a variety of spaces and places across the country during the pandemic. An increased understanding of the processes enabling this, including  the role that cross-sectoral partnerships and collaborations play, can now feed into the development of local and place-based solutions to address increasing regional inequalities in health and wellbeing.


At home with children

Learning from lockdown

Professor Rosie Parnell
(University of Newcastle)

British Ritual Innovation under COVID-19

Dr. Joshua Edelman
(Manchester Metropolitan University)

Community COVID

Combating social isolation through creative and community engagement: COVID and beyond

Professor Helen Chatterjee
(University College London)

COVID in Cartoons

Dr Fransiska Louwagie
(University of Leicester)


Culture and the Arts, from Restriction to Enhancement: Protecting Mental Health in the Liverpool City Region

Professor Josie Billington
(University of Liverpool)

Creative Doodle Book

Developing Inclusive Community Arts Engagement During Physical Distancing

Professor Matthew Reason
(York St John University)

Culture Box

Remote and Digital Delivery of Arts and Creative Activities to Improve the Wellbeing of People with Dementia in Care Homes

Professor Victoria Tischler
(University of Exeter)

Far Apart UK

Looking Beyond Lockdown – How UK Arts Organisations Can Continue To Support Young People’s Wellbeing During COVID-19

Professor Paul Heritage
(University of London)

Museums, crisis and COVID-19

Vitality and vulnerabilities

Professor Elizabeth Crooke
(Ulster University)

Nature’s way

Co-creating methods for innovating nature-based solutions for public health and green recovery in a post-covid world

Dr Qian Sun
(Royal College of Art)

Stay Home Stories

Rethinking the Domestic During the COVID-19 Pandemic

Professor Alison Blunt
(Queen Mary University of London)

Walking publics / Walking arts

Walking, wellbeing, and community during COVID-19

Professor Dee Heddon
(University of Glasgow)