Art & Healing

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Art & Healing

Innovation & Technology

Healthcare facilities are not often thought of as places to display and view art. Nonetheless, modern healthcare facilities are designed to focus on creating environments that welcome patients and their families and facilitate wellness and positive clinical outcomes.

Research demonstrates that integration of art into healthcare facilities yields:

  • Lower levels of stress
  • Lower use of pain medications
  • Reduced lengths of stay
  • Improved sleep patterns
  • Lower rates of secondary infections
  • Higher overall satisfaction levels

Integrated Art at the Living Center

Music Therapy Program

Music has been proven to reduce anxiety and pain—especially in elderly or terminally ill populations—and has a powerful and well-researched effect on the brain, the mood, and on quality of life. The inaugural year was incredibly successful with the music therapist developing a program for each resident of The Living Center. Music therapy uses musical efforts for non-musical ends; for example, learning to play an instrument can help improve range of motion and singing can be helpful in vocalization. Residents can also join one of three choirs to increase social interaction and reduce isolation.

The Jackson Hole News & Guide recently shadowed Hilary Camino, the Music Therapist, for a multi-media story. Read more here! And watch the video here!

KHOL 89.1 also featured Hilary on the air. Listen here!

Legacy Series

The Legacy Series is a compilation of five songs created during music therapy interventions with various residents at St. John’s Living Center. Songs were created in individual and group settings facilitated by Hilary Camino MSc, MT-BC (Board Certified Music Therapist). Therapeutic songwriting is used in the long-term care setting as a music therapy technique to accomplish treatment goals and objectives as defined by the music therapist and treatment team. Therapeutic songwriting is defined as ‘The process of creating, notating, and/or recording lyrics and music by the client or clients and the therapist within a therapeutic relationship to address psychosocial, emotional, cognitive and communication needs of the client’ (Baker & Wigram, 2005, p. 16). The songs in this series were collected from three individuals and one group. Each songwriting process was implemented differently to address areas depending on resident preference, need, and ability. Through songwriting, residents have the opportunity to explore and express their emotions, develop or redevelop a range of cognitive skills, address relationship issues, focus on coping strategies, construct a sense of self and identity, rehearse social skills, and engage in life review (Baker et al., 2008). When people enter a long-term care facility, they may experience feelings of loss of independence, altered sense of self, lack of motivation and sense of fulfillment due to a significant change in their lifestyle. These feelings can lead to depression and other psychosocial challenges. Trials indicate that songwriting can positively impact self-concept and significantly reduce depressive symptoms (Baker et al., 2015). “An important aim of the songwriting process is to create opportunities for songwriters to experience mastery, self-esteem, and self- confidence. As they create their own songs they receive internal and external feedback about their capacity as a songwriter, and derive pride from completing an artistic work. Some songwriters gain confidence and feel empowered to have a voice; others may acquire insight into their self-worth. Catharsis may be experienced as songwriters project their emotions onto the lyrics and music, and this emotional release may reoccur when their songs are replayed either live or through a recording. The songwriting process enables internal feelings and emotions to be externalized and then processed at a cognitive level.” (Baker, 2015). The intent of displaying the Legacy Series is to satisfy the need for residents to share their work as living artifacts, extending their therapeutic experience to involve their friends, family, and community. “When song creations are recorded or performed to the wider community, songwriters are communicating their experiences of marginalization, disability, adversity, and trauma” (Baker, 2015). Hearing these songs can transform the audience’s perspectives and beliefs about people from these marginalized groups (Baker, 2013) and may increase pro-social behavior (Greitemeyer, 2009). All songs displayed convey each resident’s unique musical taste and a deeper understanding of their thoughts and insights into their momentous lives. The music therapist implemented various therapeutic songwriting models and techniques suited for each individual resident and situation. The role of the music therapist is to guide residents through their thoughts and memories to encourage form, brevity, and consistency to develop a song. The music therapist facilitates the musical styles and lyrical organization to depict a song that serves the process and the vision of the resident. *All residents who participated gave their permission to release a description of their therapeutic process, recordings of their song(s) with their voices/instrumental work, and permission to use their quoted thoughts for this series.



Baker, F. A. (2013). The ongoing life of participant-composed songs within and beyond the clinical setting. Musicae Sientiae, 17(1), 40-56. doi:10.1177/1029864912471674 Baker, F.A. (2015). Therapeutic songwriting: Developments in theory, methods, and practice. New York: Palgrave Macmillan. Baker, F.A., Rickard, N., Tamplin, J., & Roddy, C. (2015). Flow and meaningfulness as mechanisms of change in self-concept and wellbeing following a songwriting intervention for people in the early phase of neurorehabilitation. Frontiers in Human Neuroscience, 9, 299. doi: 10.3389/fnhum.2015.00299. Baker, F.A., Wigram, T. (Eds.). (2005). Songwriting: Methods, techniques and clinical applications for music therapy clinicians, educators and students. London: Jessica Kingsley Publishers. Baker, F.A., Wigram, T., Stott, D., & McFerran, K. (2008). Therapeutic songwriting in music therapy: Part 1. Who are the therapists, who are the clients, and why is songwriting used? Nordic Journal of Music Therapy, 17(2), 105-123. Greitemeyer, T. (2009). Effects of songs with prosocial lyrics on prosocial thoughts, affect, and behavior. Journal of Experimental Social Phsychology, 45, 186-190.

Songs (to listen click each link)

A Life of Meaning

Lois’ Song

Youth on the Plains

Get Ready to Get Living

Betty Joe

"The St. John's Art & Healing Program works to increase access to the arts through community partnership. We base our program on the large body of evidence that demonstrates that having art in hospitals and medical facilities has healing and therapeutic properties. It also creates higher overall satisfaction levels for patients and employees."

Blair Christy-Director of Patient Experience

"Special Thanks to the Wyoming Arts Council for their generous support of the Art & Healing Program"

Partnership with the Center for the Arts

The Art & Healing Partnership between St. John’s Hospital Foundation, St. John’s Office of Patient Experience, and the Center for the Arts is now in its fourth year. The effort has evolved to include a broad audience and different artists. Artworks for Art & Healing are selected jointly by the St. John’s Art Committee and The Center and reflect evidence-based best practices around art for healing spaces. Select work from the Center’s call for artists are invited to exhibit within St. John’s facilities, showcasing both the artists’ work as well as the ways in which art can contribute to a healing environment.

"St. John's is grateful for the collaboration with the Center - we are honored to provide an artful and positive experience to patients, their families, and visitors at the medical center."

Rachel Merrell-Director of Development at St. John's Hosptial Foundation

Partnership with Jackson Hole Public Art

Jackson Hole Public Art developed a new mission, vision and policies to promote health and healing through the Hospital’s art collection based on national standards and evidenced based criteria. The resulting Health and Healing programs support excellence in the collection, provide education about the artwork, and promote community engagement in ways that benefit patients, visitors and the staff.

Permanent Collection

The arts are integral to improved health and well-being. As part of the Art & Healing Program, St. John’s Office of Patient Experience and St. John’s Hospital Foundation maintain a permanent collection, on display in St. John’s Medical Center. A selected group of these artworks is available to view in our online gallery.

Adam Wolpert

Employing a range of techniques and motifs, Adam’s work reflects a lifelong engagement with Nature.  The Pond Series is a new acquisition to the St. John’s Art & Healing Program thanks to a generous gift from Agnes Bourne.


Kathryn Turner

The artwork of Kathryn Mapes Turner has unfolded from the mountain valley of Jackson Hole, Wyoming. As a daughter of the Northern Rockies, she was born as the fourth generation and raised on the Triangle X Ranch in Grand Teton National Park. She grew up riding the trails of the valley, learning wilderness lore and gaining an eye for landscape. She spent an influential semester in Rome, Italy and then studied at the Corcoran School of Art in Washington D.C. She next earned a Master’s degree from the University of Virginia. Having been passionate about painting since childhood, Turner is now an award winning artist nationally recognized with top honors from the American Impressionist Society, Southeastern Wildlife Exhibition and the National Academy of Equine Art.


Pamela Gibson

Pamela Gibson has been exploring the Western landscape through her art for more than 30 years. She holds a BFA from Oregon College of Art and Craft. Her work has been featured in numerous solo and group shows in Wyoming, Oregon, Colorado and Washington. She has completed public commissions, including signature pieces for the Oregon Health and Science University’s Center for Women’s Health and the St. John’s Medical Center in Jackson Hole. Her work hangs in many private collections in the Western United States.

Bronwyn Minton

Bronwyn Minton is a multi-disciplinary artist and curator. Minton holds a BFA from the Rhode Island School of Design and an MFA from the San Francisco Art Institute. Minton is the Director of Exhibits and Programs at the Art Association of Jackson Hole, a practicing artist and an independent curator. Minton’s work has been shown nationally and internationally, and is in public and private collections. Minton’s process involves experimentation with ideas, method and media, leading to final works. In the past, this has included drawing, photography, sculpture, printmaking and interactive installations. Her questions stem from unique perspectives, including classic children’s literature, ancient mythology, and rigorous scientific observation. She uses simple forms derived from nature as a starting point, often exploiting radically different scale, from the microscopic to the monumental.

Scotty Craighead

Scotty Craighead was raised in Kelly Wyoming, and has lived in Teton County for the last 21 years. He has always had a close relationship with nature and western landscapes. When he was younger he enjoyed camping and trips into nature with his family. Scotty attended Colorado College where he received his BA in Studio Art. Since graduating he has shown his art at local venues including Daly Projects gallery, Teton Artlab, and Center for the Arts. He has also taught at Jackson Hole Community School and Jackson Hole High School.

Chuck Schneebeck

Part of my early childhood was spent on our family farm in Colorado Springs.  That is where I developed my love of nature.  In the summer, I would explore the riparian area of our farm enjoying the natural treasures.  I waded in the wetlands, caught snakes and frogs.  Got leeches on my legs and found bird nests.  I especially liked the birds.  I didn’t have a bird book or binoculars, but I knew most of the common species without knowing their species names. In college, I took the opportunity to learn more about the natural world.  I studied biology and chemistry and a minor in geology.  I even had an opportunity to take an ornithology course complete with a bird identification book and a pair of binoculars.  My undergraduate work was geared toward ecology and gave me an opportunity to look at nature as a system.  My graduate work was weighted toward cell molecular biology.  My career was in education.  I taught chemistry and biology in high school and biology in college.  My last sixteen years were spent as a college administrator.  In 2000, I retired and moved to Jackson Hole.  Over the years, I have climbed all of the fourteen thousand-foot peaks in Colorado, climbed in the Wind River Range, the Tetons, in California and Alaska.  My biology background and time spent in the out-of-doors have a significant impact on the way I do my photography.  Now I am able to travel extensively and draw on what I have learned of the natural world and apply it to my artistic endeavor

Glenn Sturm

I started taking pictures as a young boy when my father, who was an Army officer, took us on family trips to Paris. When I got in the car, knowing how much I loved pictures, my parents gave me a present, an inexpensive camera. I was the highlight of my trip as well as the remaining time I lived in Germany with my family. As a result of this insightful gift, I have carried cameras with me around the world. I am routinely asked my my pack is so big or so heavy. The reason is simply, I am afraid I will miss a picture. I have been blessed during my life to see so many images that I thought were memorable or have remained special in my heart. I believe that I am privileged by seeing and capturing those images that have resonated with me. My photos are a combination of landscapes, wildlife, and my family.  Glenn is in his 9th year of continuous chemotherapy. He often describes photography as an essential part of his cancer treatment. Photography brings Glenn great joy and an escape from being a patient. Giving back is a big part of who Glenn is, and it is with enthusiasm that he supports our community hospital. St. John’s Hospital Foundation is deeply grateful to Glenn for his extraordinary gift of art.

John James Audubon

In a community collaboration to share artwork, the National Museum of Wildlife Art has loaned 12 John James Audubon prints to the Art & Healing Program. As part of the collaboration, the Foundation funded the framing of the educational prints now on display. A few of the bird species represented include: Wild Turkey, Ivory-Billed Woodpecker, Great Horned Owl, and the Purple Finch.  The Museum has 48 original Audubon artworks in its Permanent Collection. Of those, 12 were done by John’s son, John Woodhouse Audubon, who took up depicting animals, mostly mammals, in the same iconic style as his father.

Current Exhibits in the POB

Isabel Rucker

I paint abstract watercolor paintings that include natural phenomena, memories, and environmental observations. I have a deep love for the natural world and spend a lot of time outdoors where I observe sunlight as it refracts through frost, glitters in water, or passes through leaves. I also enjoy looking for rocks and minerals in the mountains and examining their structure and color. I bring all of these observations to my art studio where I choose to paint abstractly so I may merge my painting with these natural and remembered worlds. I prefer watercolors for this body of work to achieve luminescent layers. Also included in this exhibit is “Soul Meditation”, 11 small narrative paintings that take the viewer on a journey from the Earth upwards into the heavens, beyond to the unknown, and then back down to Earth. I often look toward the sky for peace, solace, and answers and with this work I was considering our individual and collective souls and the heavenly realms above us.

Boughton Walden

Growing up in North Carolina, Boughton emerged herself in artistic culture after initially studying under her grandfather, a talented watercolorist.  Boughton realized she had a passion for visual art and pursued a further education at the University of Alabama. There she majored in graphic design and focused in studio art, and was later featured in a number of exhibits at the university.

Her work is heavily influenced and inspired by the likes of Andy Warhol, Georgia O’Keefe, Banksy, and Sally Mann. Not only in style, but use of mediums.

Boughton moved to Jackson Hole, WY in 2008 and was introduced to a whole new range of life, one that she decided to capture through her artwork. Her love for the wild animals of west and the sense of absolute freedom, in an environment with such dramatic scenery, was a huge inspiration for her work in the past years. Boughton has had her work displayed in galleries in Jackson, all around Colorado, Alabama, and can now be seen in Toronto, Canada. Boughton has been featured in quite a few shows around the Teton Valley area, most notably the Jackson Hole Art Fairs in 2016-17, Fall Arts Festival, Popadelic art Exhibit at CIAO Gallery, Naturally Nude exhibit at Shadow Mountain Gallery, Jackson Hole Salon shows, and also featured in the “Best of Wyoming” exhibit in 2013. Still living in Jackson Hole, Boughton is a full time graphic designer and artist.

 Comunidad Latinos: Then & NowThinkWY / Wyoming Humanities Council

ThinkWY/Wyoming Humanities Council sponsored “Comunidad Latinos: Then & Now,” by photographer Anne Muller. The exhibit… Tells the stories and shares the images of Latinos in our community, reveals their career choices and speaks of the community contributions of ten outstanding members of our local Latino community. Ten years ago, Anne Muller created the Exhibition entitled “Porque. Why.” that included stories of “why” Latinos had come to create their lives here in Jackson. Comunidad Latinos: Then & Now follows those same individuals to show their lives today. On view throughout 2016.

The Happiness Project: Bhutan — Anne Muller

Anne Muller’s photographs for “The Happiness Project: Bhutan,” explore themes of culture and joy, religion and reflection of people living in the kingdom of Bhutan, often regarded as the happiest place on earth. On view through 2017.

Images from the Sun & Moon to Deep Space —Michael Adler

Since retiring, Mike has been pursuing his hobbies of astronomy and photography as well as traveling with his wife Virginia. In 2014, he built an observatory at his Wilson home that houses 20”, 12.5”, and 6” telescopes. In 2013, his astrophotography was featured as the inaugural exhibit at the Teton County Library, where he had additional exhibits in 2015 and 2017.  Michael donated 18 astrophotography images printed on aluminum to St. John’s permanent collection.  These vary from half second images of the sun during last August’s eclipse to images of deep space nebulas and galaxies as far as 2.5 million light years away which took 40 hours to complete.


"When my daughter sings for my mother, it is like my mother wakes up. Her face lights up and she is suddenly totally present, even if she doesn’t—or can’t—say anything."

daughter of a Living Center resident

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