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Creative practice with clay: A mutual route to recovery?

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This article summarizes the findings of a project called ‘Clay Transformations’ and was part of the Creative Practice as Mutual Recovery Programme funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council. Using a mixed methods approach, the project aimed to assess the extent to which involvement in clay workshops promoted the well-being of a group of 42 participants, including mental health service users, artists and practitioners. A particular focus in this respect was placed on the incidence of ‘mutual recovery’ which extends the concept of recovery beyond the individual to incorporate the wider group and its context. It was subsequently found that workshop involvement helped to promote, not only the well-being and mutual recovery of participants, it also enhanced the supportive capacities and social capital of the settings in which these activities took place, both within the workshops and beyond.

Keywords: arts participation; clay work; creativity; mutual recovery; psychological and social well-being; social inclusion

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: University of Nottingham

Publication date: November 1, 2018

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  • The Journal of Applied Arts and Health serves a wide community of artists, researchers, practitioners and policy-makers evidencing the effectiveness of the interdisciplinary use of arts in health and arts for health. It provides a forum for the publication and debate within an interdisciplinary field of arts in healthcare and health promotion. The journal defines 'health' broadly which includes physical, mental, emotional, spiritual, occupational, social and community health.
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