© Emmi’s home, Turku

Impact of arts on health and well-being

The past few years have seen an increase in the awareness of the positive impact of arts for health and well-being in the EU and beyond.

Covid-19 highlighted some of the serious challenges that impact our health and care systems.

The pandemic has brought to light a mental health crisis, especially among young people, which is further exasperated by climate anxiety and the current war in Ukraine.

Furthermore, an ageing population means that more people will require care in the future. Increasingly overburdened and burned-out staff are making us aware that we need to pay more attention to their well-being as well. Such complex challenges call for new solutions.

Significant evidence confirms that culture and artistic activities are not a burden on the system. Art and culture are part of a solution that will help us to strategically deal with the challenges we are facing in the health and care sectors.

Over the past years, several projects, organisations and publications gathered knowledge on the positive impact of arts and cultural activities on health and well-being.

In the frame of ClowNexus, one of our goals was to increase the awareness of the benefits of artistic activities, such as healthcare clowning, for health and well-being.

We participated in several CultureForHealth events and organised a common event with CultureForHealth and the Lithuanian Permanent Representation in Brussels on the topic of “Culture and Mental Health – Practices and Policies”.

When the European Commission and the European Parliament jointly hosted an event on “Culture as a driver for health and well-being in the EU” we were invited to share experiences of our work as a good practice from the field.

Together with health and social care professionals, as well as decision makers, we are advocating for making the arts an integral and indispensable element of health, social care, humanitarian policies and institutional practices.

© RED NOSES International

Read more studies, reports and publications here:

“Creative Health: The Arts for Health and Well-being”, All-Party Parliamentary Group on Arts, Health and Well-being, 2017.


“Health Evidence Network synthesis report 67 – What is the evidence on the role of the arts in improving health and well-being?”, Daisy Fancourt and Saoirse Finn, WHO Europe, 2019.


“Culture’s contribution to health and well-being”, Culture For Health, 2022.


“Arts and health: supporting the mental well-being of forcibly displaced people”, WHO Europe, 2022.


International projects and networks: