Healing Through the Arts on FOCUS

Last Updated by Laura McHugh on

Heather Rodale, president and founder of Healing Through the Arts, recently joined us on the set of FOCUS. Healing Through the Arts is a non-profit organization that encourages people to find inspiration through art during hard times in their lives.

Heather uncovered this connection between healthy bodies and artistic expression when she was diagnosed with stage 3 melanoma. After her surgery, Heather was left with the nagging question in her mind of “Am I cured?” Heather soon fell into a state of depression, took a leave of absence from work, and focused on her healing process by remembering three words her surgeon told her: “Attitude is everything.”

During her own healing process, she stumbled upon the work of Roger Ulrich, who detailed how the view from ones hospital room can influence his or her recovery. Ulrich found that patients with a view of nature from their hospital room experience more positive feelings, as opposed to patients with a view of a brick wall. Heather then realized she wanted to provide a window of hope in a hospital room and created her non-profit organization.

Healing Through the Arts tasks high school and college students with creating a piece of artwork that tells a story about healing. Each piece of artwork is accompanied by an inspiration statement, which includes details from the artist’s own healing process or pieces of advice they want others to know. These pieces of art are then hung in treatment areas or hospital hallways – places where patients will see them. 

Hundreds of pieces of artwork have been distributed to hospitals and doctor’s offices since the founding of Healing Through the Arts.

The Hope and Healing Art Show is Mar. 7-30 at the Baum School of Art in Allentown. The winners will be announced at an awards ceremony on Mar. 30, or you can view the winners on Healing Through the Arts’ Facebook page.

To learn more about Healing Through the Arts, visit www.htta.org.

Watch our interview with Heather and more on this special arts edition of FOCUS.

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