Therapeutic Art

Through generous support from the Arthur and Helen Baer Foundation

What is therapeutic art?

Therapeutic art provides children who are challenged with medical and health issues the opportunity for emotional, creative and spiritual growth.

What are the benefits of therapeutic art?

Therapeutic art engages the mind, body and spirit in unique ways and has proven benefits for children with a range of diagnoses. It provides sensory stimulation and relieves anxiety and stress. It addition, it is an expressive outlet for those who are non-verbal or have difficulty expressing themselves, and it enhances social skills, increases self-esteem and helps develop motor skills.

When language is limited or feelings aren’t being verbalized, therapeutic art offers an effective way for children to express themselves in a safe setting.

For the children at Ranken Jordan, therapeutic art also encourages children to get out of their rooms and have fun as part of our Care Beyond the Bedside model.

What are some examples of therapeutic art at Ranken Jordan?

At Ranken Jordan, the multidisciplinary team of recreation therapists, child life specialists, child development assistant, and volunteer coordinate art projects and activities. Therapeutic art isn’t about the outcomes, it’s all about the process.

One example of therapeutic art is our popular “Paint the Docs.” This fun painting extravaganza allows children to enthusiastically spray syringes of paint on our physicians and/or canvases. Amidst the smiles and laughter, this project is also a way to normalize medical equipment—children at Ranken Jordan see a lot of syringes in their care.

In addition, this therapeutic play is an empowering role reversal. The children are directing the doctors in their “art” and have control over the process.

Another way we normalize medical equipment is through our wheelchair art. Children roll their wheelchairs or powerchairs through paint on large canvases on the floor to create interesting, unique artwork. While this is a messy project, the children’s joy makes it all worthwhile.

This artwork may be displayed in our Inspiration Gallery, located in our Ranken Jordan facility for all to enjoy. Some of the art is even sold to support Ranken Jordan’s innovative work in Care Beyond the Bedside.

Contact Us

To learn more about therapeutic art, please contact us at (314) 872-6452.

Thanks to support from the Baer Foundation

The Arthur and Helen Baer Foundation has provided generous support for our therapeutic art programming. Arthur Baer was the CEO of Stix, Baer and Fuller. He and his wife, Helen, were both very passionate about the arts. Their legacy foundation supports many organizations in the St. Louis community with the purpose of making art experiences and art education accessible, and to keep the arts thriving in our community. We are so grateful to the Baer Foundation for helping make therapeutic art accessible to our diverse patient population.