Creative ways to engage and get ones mind off their illness

Rockhampton Art Gallery curator Diana Warnes talks about the upcoming Art and Alzheimers training workshop which will show how art tours and activities can help dementia sufferers. Photo: Chris Ison / The Morning Bulletin
Rockhampton Art Gallery curator Diana Warnes talks about the upcoming Art and Alzheimers training workshop which will show how art tours and activities can help dementia sufferers. Photo: Chris Ison / The Morning Bulletin Chris Ison

WHEN Diana Warnes' grandmother was battling cancer, she sought solace in weekly art classes.

Socialising with others and creating something took her grandmother's mind off her illness.

Seeing her grandmother fulfilled by the therapy of art was the reason Diana wanted to bring the Art and Alzheimer's training workshop to the Rockhampton Art Gallery.

Presented by the National Gallery of Australia and Alzheimer's Australia, the workshop brought local health care providers together on Tuesday and Wednesday.

The workshops included training in discussion-based tours of art works with the aim of establishing a program of art tours for dementia patients in Rockhampton.

Diana, curator at the Rockhampton Art Gallery, said the project was a first for Central Queensland.

She said she was finding ways the gallery could be more engaging in the community.

"I'm really keen to breakdown the perception of what a gallery can be and if this changes that perception it's a positive thing," Diana said.

"I think it's quite an interesting learning environment. It's a unique, wonderful opportunity (for the gallery)."

Although there's no more learning workshops planned at the moment, Diana said she hoped there would be more in the future.

Topics:  alzheimers, cancer, rockhampton art gallery

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