Community Arts, Healing Together

Art HOPE Senbazuru
Art HOPE 1000 Healing Cranes

Come together with others and become your creative self at your best. Humans are social animals and one aspect of our connectedness to others is the natural process of getting together with our peers and the community at large to share a creative experience.

Art-making, the experience of creating, art-taking, experiencing what is created, and art-giving, sharing creative experience, are the ways creativity happens and wellness is activated. Showing up and being present for creative experience, solo or in a crowd, is how we can uplift and heal the human condition. Communing and coming together with our own creativity or the shared expression of a group can be a way to wellness. Because our creative nature is social and we like to celebrate life, the experience of getting together with friends and community members can bring us to a common ground for common good. Common ways we are united by the expressive arts can be a concert, an art exhibition or festival, a theatrical or dance performance, a seasonal celebration or fair, a poetry reading or book club, or a creativity workshop where we learn new skills and develop a talent or interest. Community is creative.

Art HOPE 1000 Healing Cranes is an example of how the expressive arts builds community and brings people together for the good of a larger population. It’s an on-going project of our Youth Service in Health Care Program. Throughout the year we have outreach programs in local schools and at the York Public Library to teach participants of all ages how to fold an origami paper crane and the therapeutic qualities of the medium. Volunteer artists make colorful cranes that we collect and give to York Hospital Cancer Care. In Japanese tradition paper cranes symbolize a wish for health and well-being, and 1000 ensures good luck for all. Senbazuru is 1000 origami paper cranes strung together as a symbol of hope and happiness, which is created and then given as a gift to uplift others. Our annual 1000 Healing Cranes Community Origami Gathering will held at the Ogunquit Museum of American Art on Sunday, October 18 from 10am to 3pm. Join volunteer origami artists at this free program who will teach classic folding techniques in the spirit of creative wellness and healing together.

Thanks to Art HOPE intern Mackenzie Levy for the beautiful picture of the Senbazuru made by Hannah Sattler, which will be on display at the Museum this weekend.