Posts Tagged ‘art therapy’

The Importance of Dementia Compassionate Culture

Saturday, November 4th, 2017

Cognitive Dynamics Founder and President Daniel C. Potts, MD, FAAN was a recent guest of Mike Good (Together In This) for a podcast titled “The Importance of Dementia Compassionate Culture.”  In the podcast, Good and Potts discuss the story and art of Lester E. Potts, Jr., an Alabama saw miller who discovered a hidden talent for watercolor painting after the diagnosis of Alzheimer’s, and how this discovery led to new insights about the persistence of personhood and creativity in persons living with dementia.

The program created in memory of Lester Potts, Bringing Art to Life, was then discussed as a means to grow empathy and create a culture of compassion in dementia care through art therapy, storytelling, and the building of intergenerational relationships.  The program has two active locations, at the University of Alabama and in Chicago (Bringing Art to Life: Chicago), and is under development at other sites.

For more about Bringing Art to Life, check this link: Bringing Art to Life

#20: The Importance of a Dementia Compassionate Culture with Dr. Daniel Potts

Bringing Art to Life Research Presented at IAGG 2017

Friday, July 28th, 2017

The Bringing Art to Life (BATL) Research Team presented an abstract titled “The Effects of an Intergenerational Service Learning Experience on Ageist Attitudes” highlighting outcomes data from University of Alabama Honors students enrolled in UH 300: Art to Life at the 21st IAGG World Congress of Gerontology and Geriatrics in San Francisco on July 25, 2017.

UH 300: Art to Life is an Honors service learning class offered at the University of Alabama as part of our foundation’s Bringing Art to Life (BATL) program. Students learn about Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias, participate in the Virtual Dementia Tour, volunteer at an adult dementia daycare center, participate in mindfulness activities, develop an appreciation for the challenges of caregiving, and learn the tenets of person-centered care. In the experiential part of the course, students are paired with persons living with dementia, and participate in weekly art therapy sessions facilitated by an experienced art therapist. Students develop relationships with their participants, learn their life stories, and create a leather-bound life legacy book using LifeBio.com, presenting this to their participants and their families in a celebratory dinner at the end of the semester.

A research team from the Alabama Research Institute on Aging and the UA Department of Psychology led by Keisha Ivey, MA and Rebecca Allen, PhD has been conducting research since 2015, and the current abstract addresses student data from pre-and post surveys measuring empathy and attitudes toward older adults, persons living with dementia and community service.

Compared with student controls from a psychology of aging course, BATL students exhibited statistically significant improvement in attitudes towards persons living with dementia and toward community service, as well as greater increases in empathy.

Research will be ongoing, and will involve analysis of the program’s impact on participating persons living with dementia and their caregivers.

For more information on Bringing Art to Life, read this Huffington Post article by Angel C. Duncan, MA, MFT-ATR, the Executive Arts Director for Cognitive Dynamics who helped to create the program: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/angel-duncan/bringing-art-to-life-an-i_b_9619446.html

From left to right, Dr. Anne Halli-Tierney, Dr. Rebecca Allen, and Dr. Daniel C. Potts at the 21st IAGG World Congress of Gerontology and Geriatrics

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Cognitive Dynamics Launches Bringing Art to Life Chicago

Friday, June 10th, 2016

Cognitive Dynamics Foundation has launched Bringing Art to Life Chicago, an innovative art therapy program for persons with Alzheimer’s disease and other types of dementia.  The program will be based on the past 5 years’ success of Bringing Art to Life in partnership with the University of Alabama Honors College in the service learning course, UH Art to Life.

The program will bring art therapy and the opportunity for empathic, intergenerational relationships to persons with dementia and students in the Chicago area, as well as education and support for their caregivers.

Our team includes Project Directors and former UA Art to Life students, Angela Ray and Cyrus Alavi, Lead Physician and Rush University Neurologist, Neelum Aggarwal, MD, and VA Lead, Kevin Hull, JD.

The program is supported in part by the High Socks for Hope Foundation, a nonprofit started by Chicago White Sox pitcher, David Robertson and his wife, Erin.  The photographs below were made at the Palmer House Hotel in Chicago at a recent fundraiser hosted by High Socks for Hope.

For more information about the program, please contact BringingArtToLifeChicago@gmail.com.

BATL Chicago team Angela Ray, Neelum Aggarwal, MD, and Kevin Hull, JD

BATL Chicago Project Directors, Angela Ray and Cyrus Alavi

Chicago White Sox pitcher, David Robertson, wife, Erin, Angela Ray and Neelum Aggarwal, MD

Cognitive Dynamics and UA to Host Art Gala

Friday, April 8th, 2016

To all former students & participants in the Art to Life program at the University of Alabama Honors College:

PLEASE SAVE THE DATE: APRIL 19, 2016 – 6 to 8 pm
Ferguson Center Gallery on the UA campus
751 Campus Drive West, Tuscaloosa, AL 35404

Cognitive Dynamics requests the honor of your presence at a gala celebrating 5 years of our Art to Life program. We want to honor our former participants, their families and all former students, as well as other organizations and individuals who have made this program possible. There will be a brief program in the Ferguson Center Theater at just after 6 pm, and then a gallery viewing of art created by our former participants.

We thank all of you for making this program what it is, and we want to honor you. We hope you can join us on the 19th.

The art and information about the program will be on display in the Ferguson Center Gallery from April 12th through the 22nd, and the Gallery will be open from 8 am until 10 pm for viewing.

Copy of Copy of DSC07509

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Art to Life: A Celebration – A Short Film

Sunday, April 3rd, 2016

This video by Lauren Musgrove documents a celebratory dinner held on 12/8/2015 for the University of Alabama Honors College service learning course “Art to Life,” developed by Cognitive Dynamics Foundation in collaboration with the University. The course pairs undergraduate students of diverse majors with persons who have Alzheimer’s disease or other causes of dementia in an empathy and relationship-building art therapy, reminiscence and storytelling experience. To honor their participants, students host an end-of-semester gala at which leather-bound legacy books from LifeBio.com are presented to the participants and their families. These books contain student letters, poetry, participant art and life story material. Students also give the participants the art they have created over the semester, and share stories and words of thanks to honor and validate the personhood of their new friends.

Click on the link below to watch the 6 minute video.


Art to Life: A Celebration

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Bringing Art to Life Program Featured in Mosaic Magazine

Monday, February 15th, 2016

University of Alabama Honors College Mosaic Magazine has published an article by Rachel Wilburn titled “A New Beginning.” The article highlights Cognitive Dynamics Foundation’s Bringing Art to Life program, offered as an undergraduate service learning course (UH 300: Art to Life).

You may read the article beginning on page 2 at this link:
A New Beginning

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Morgan and Potts Publish “Treasure for Alzheimer’s”

Saturday, September 26th, 2015

Cognitive Dynamics is honored to announce the release of Treasure for Alzheimer’s – Reflecting on experiences with the art of Lester E. Potts, Jr., by Richard L. Morgan, PhD & Daniel C. Potts, MD, FAAN. The book contains a series of reflections on Dr. Morgan’s experiences using the artwork of Lester E. Potts, Jr. to connect with people who have Alzheimer’s disease or Dementias of other causes.

We are grateful to our editors – Lynda Everman, Don Wendorf, PsyD, proofreader – Ellen W. Potts, MBA, and to our reviewers – Mara Botonis, Cathie Borrie, Rev. Dr. William B. Randolph and Kevin Jameson. A portion of the proceeds from the sales of this book will go to support the documentary film, “Do You Know Me Now?”

The book will soon be available on Amazon.com, but may be ordered now at the link below. https://www.createspace.com/5708351

 

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“Bringing Art to Life” to Open in Chicago

Wednesday, June 3rd, 2015

Bringing Art to Life, an exhibit opening at the National Museum of Health and Medicine Chicago June 5, 2015, from 6 to 9 pm, will feature art by Lester E. Potts, Jr., a saw miller-turned-watercolor artist after the diagnosis of Alzheimer’s disease (AD), and poetry by his son, Alabama neurologist Daniel C. Potts, MD, FAAN. The exhibit will highlight art and design as quality of life-promoting therapies for people with neurodegenerative disease, as well as techniques to enhance the effectiveness of caregiving. Elizabeth Barber, PhD will discuss her research on art and interior design as tools to create therapeutic environments especially for people with Parkinson’s disease (PD), and which lessen caregiver burden. A panel discussion will include distinguished AD and PD physicians experienced in the expressive arts, and an art therapist. Panelists will include Neelum Aggarwal, MD, Elizabeth Barber, PhD, Theresa Dewey, ATR, LCPC, Christopher Goetz, MD, and Daniel C. Potts, MD, FAAN. The Greater Illinois Chapter of the Alzheimer’s Association is a partner for the event. The exhibit will run from June 5 – 26.

 

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Do You Know Me Now” Crowd Funding Goes Live on Indiegogo

Friday, May 15th, 2015

DO YOU KNOW ME NOW ?

Life is about relationships, and relationships are built through our unique human traits – the things that make us who we are.  All of us have a story!  And our stories need to be heard.

People who have Alzheimer’s disease or other causes of dementia share our humanity– no one loses their personhood just because they have memory loss or confusion.  And they still need to be in relationship with others who love and care for them.  To truly know someone we must appreciate their life stories, as well as the particular gifts and passions that they contribute to the world.

Do You Know Me Now? is a feature documentary exploring relationship and personhood in people who have Alzheimer’s disease and other causes of dementia.  Our film will take a novel look at what it means to be a person with dementia who is still very much alive and possessing those traits upon which relationships may be built, even late into the disease.  We will highlight the stories of some very special people  and their loved ones who have found ways to connect — who have discovered joy, beauty and self-expression despite the losses.

Relationship that is deep and meaningful is still very much a possibility despite advancing cognitive loss, and should be the standard if we are to create what one of the film’s featured caregivers calls a “culture of compassion.”  Such care calls us to take an empathic journey into the very core of the person with dementia in search of the beauty and relational energy contained within.  We believe that our society cannot afford to lose this human treasure.

We have completed approximately half of the work needed to produce our documentary and are seeking the remainder through this Indiegogo crowd funding drive.  We need to raise $75,000 to finish the film, and get it out to the world. 

Will you help us tell the stories of people with Alzheimer’s and other causes of dementia, to show the world that they are still vibrant souls capable of meaningful relationships?  Will you help us share the hope, end the stigma, and create a culture of compassion?

Thank you for your support!

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Do You Know Me Now? – A New Documentary from Cognitive Dynamics

Thursday, April 30th, 2015

Are you, or is someone you love a caregiver for a person with Alzheimer’s disease or another dementia? Are you in need of inspiration and hope amidst this experience? Do you find it difficult to reach your loved one, to remain in relationship with them due to their memory loss?

Do You Know Me Now? seeks to show you ways in which you can reach your loved in the moment and have a mutually fulfilling relationship with them – one which discovers the person beneath the disease and builds upon remaining abilities and personality traits that still remain.

Our film will tell the inspirational stories of Cathie Borrie and her mother (The Long Hello: Memory, My Mother and Me), Rita and James Houston, and Lester Potts, and will share the wisdom and experience of well-known experts such as Naomi Feil (founder of The Validation Training Institute), and Alzheimer’s advocates such as Lynda Everman and Don Wendorf.

Life is about relationships, and these relationships need not be lost due to Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias. This trailer for Do You Know Me Now? is part of a crowd-funding campaign which will start in May, 2015, and seeks to raise the funds necessary to complete this documentary and get it out to you, to your loved ones, and to the world.

You may watch the film’s trailer here: https://youtu.be/9rLyDgti1h8

Please be watching for a crowd funding release on Indiegogo in May, 2015.

Cathie Borrie, Daniel Potts, Judith Murray, Rita Houston and James Houston

Cathie Borrie, Daniel Potts, Judith Murray, Rita Houston and James Houston

Thank you.

Naomi Feil and Daniel C. Potts

Naomi Feil and Daniel C. Potts

 

Lester E. Potts Jr.

Lester E. Potts, Jr.

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